Beyond Academia

The Beyond academia track of PDC2020 gathers contributions from practitioners active in community, commercial, government, and not-for-profit spaces who are exploring participatory frameworks in their work. The selected contributions are gathered in 3 sessions each working via a specific format, complemented by 1 reflection panel. Details and locations of the sessions will be added soon. Some contributions migth be presented in English others in Spanish or Portuguese, details to follow.

Chairs: Cristian Job Nieman Janssen (Universidad de los Andes – COL), Guilherme Meyer (Universidade do Vale do Rio dos Sinos – BRA), Jeannette Blomberg (IBM – USA), María de Mater O’Neill (Rubberband Design Studio – PRI), Penny Hagen (Auckland Co-Design Lab – NZL)

BA1 – Participatory design “in the World” 

Whānau room rejuvenation: Valuing whānau as an integral dimension of Hauora for patients at Auckland DHB  

Emma Wylie, Justin Kennedy-Good 

The whānau room rejuvenation project presented an opportunity to lift the standard of our 45 whānau rooms across Adult services at Auckland DHB; to warmly welcome whānau, whilst also acknowledging and respecting the Tikanga that surrounds these culturally important spaces. A co-design process working with whānau, patients, staff, community members, designers and architects was undertaken to ensure the new designs for these spaces reflect the needs of our community as they go through stressful and often life-altering experiences in our hospitals. This rejuvenation is being made possible by the fundraising efforts of the Auckland Health Foundation. 


TOUCHpoint: Giving Seniors Voices and Choices in Eldercare Design  

Chong Keng Hua, Kang Fong Ing  

In this presentation we will share about a unique case of participatory community design in Singapore – one that involved seniors in contributing towards the design of a senior activity centre, TOUCHpoint. Series of engagements were conducted before and during the design stage to determine the programs, location, and actual design of the community space, giving senior choices and a platform to voice their preferences and aspirations. The outcome is a seamless ribbon of indoor-outdoor spaces amidst greenery which becomes a new eldercare typology that strengthens care at the community level and fosters a culture of mutual support among senior residents, towards the goal of ‘aging-in-community’. 


Expedición Bogotánica, genialidad en la neurodiversidad  

Alejandra Melo Chaves 

A través de una interacción participativa con los asistentes, vamos a discutir sobre algunas técnicas y/o herramientas que utilizamos en Expedición Bogotánica, un proyecto dedicado a fomentar la productividad en la neurodiversidad, un espacio donde diseñamos con jóvenes con discapacidades cognitivas, gracias al trabajo realizado en conjunto entre la academia y el sector social, donde comenzaremos a hablar de Diseño en Comunidad. 


Participatory Lighting Design in Puerto Rico 

Marién Vélez, Nasheli Ortiz  

Prende Paloma’ is the project we would like to present as an interactive discussion of case study to open a dialogue by doing an overview of the current situation in Puerto Rico and how through participatory lighting design we are changing culture within socio-economic systems. We understand our project relates to the conference themes considering we develop alternative infrastructures that support civic participation and horizontal governance using our project in Comerío, a central mountain town in PR, as an example. We provoke questions to challenge the current culture and imposed lightscapes to explore through design, concrete solutions to the community necessities. 

BA-2 Socio-political context for transformation 


The role of Community Organizations in the transformation of foodscapes for the consolidation of peace economies and territorial peace in Colombia 

Ana Prada. 

In this occasion we address the relevance of rethinking the way community organizations (COs) from Family and Community Farming Agriculture (FCFA) are accompanied in Colombia, to strength the community innovation and co-designing effective solutions to the daily crossroads of COs in the current Colombian context, which moves towards a post-conflict scenario. Through the project “Custodians of hope”, it was found that in Colombia there are community processes that are disrupting the foodcape through short-circuit commercialization schemes, community innovation and the creation of peace economies, which contribute to the construction of territorial peace. 


Participatory design as a method to support the community forms of urban life in the contemporary city: Palo Alto cooperative. 

Abrahan Rodríguez Buendia 

In the sesión we want to introduce to the public and specialists of the conference, the work we have realized with the Palo Alto cooperative (Mexico City) through a participatory process since 2015, with many moments of participatory design. The goal of our work is to support and strengthen this particular cooperative, as a community form of urban life in the contemporary city, as a few examples of this kind in this place. We want to share the methods we used in the process, the potential and challenges that we found and receive feedback from the experts at the conference. 


Creating global learning systems infrastructure: a collective for multidisciplinary and cross-sector practice to tackling complex socio-political issues 

Nicole Anand, Lauren Weinstein 

After one year of research, concepting and co-designing, we are set to prototype The Residency – a collective of infinite learners and a mix of government, civil society and social designers/innovators seeking to upskill in multidisciplinary and cross-sector practice. We’d like to share the concept, the participatory process undertaken to co-design the collective, and the early observations of how an intentional global learning infrastructure can facilitate the exchange of mindsets, share power across adjacent disciplines, and privilege plural craft through self-determined exchange. 


** Presentation pending confirmation (AE)

BA3 – Architecture as action 

Projeto Vizinhança 

Aline Callegaro de Paula Bueno, Márcia Machado Braga  

Projeto Vizinhança is a collaborative project that happens in different neighborhoods of Porto Alegre, Brazil, continuously since 2012. It is a participatory and temporary urban intervention project that discusses issues related to public space and its ability to produce encounters in the daily life of a community. In this sense, through Projeto Vizinhança, we aim to activate idle or «interstitial» spaces of the city transforming them into places. It stimulates new experiences from processes that involve exchanges and learning in this environment built collectively and therefore playful, creative and informal. 


Workshops Arquitecturas Colectivas 

Yazmín M. Crespo, Omayra Rivera Crespo, Irmaris Santiago Rodríguez  

The taller Creando Sin Encargos is a design collective that has developed design-build Workshops titled Arquitecturas Colectivas (WAC). WAC is an inclusive methodology that encourages the exchange of knowledge at the horizontal level. We aim to present two WAC: 2013 WAC design-build in La Perla neighborhood and the 2017 WAC design-build in the Puerta de Tierra neighborhood. The WAC look at the ideation and construction of spaces together with students, volunteers, and the community. We would like to share the way in which each WAC develops its own approaches to participatory community engagement towards solidarity and action. 


Re-imagining Benefield 

Divya Nautiyal, Philip Miller, Nick Cooper 

We will share our experiences of working on an architectural project with community members in Highland Park, Richmond (U.S.) which is a predominantly black neighborhood who have been historically overlooked by the political system. The rationale for the process was that the partnership and engagement with the participants would lead to architectural solutions that provides participants control not just in the development but in the long-term use and appropriation as the community’s vision changes over time. We want to share our participatory design approach and open it to critique and feedback from other PD practitioners present during the session. 


Insurgent Architectural Actions 

Alejandra Villamil, Andrés Sánchez, Aaron Brakke  

In recent years, there has been an emergence of “colectivos”, collective groups of architects and urbanists, that seek to work with underserved communities on the transformation of the built environment. This work is generally completed as a pro-bono service that is an alternative to traditional practice. Conventional disciplinary design methods as used by the architectural profession have not worked sufficiently to address the spatial needs of “marginalized” communities in Latin American urban peripheries. Young architects are working with communities and adapting participatory design methodologies to develop architectural and urban projects. This past autumn we organized a symposium to share experiences. We invited colectivos and members of communities to present actions that they have taken to strengthen their communities through these participatory design projects. We found that it was very productive to invite these people to a safe space where real processes could be unveiled and that learning from failures was just as important (if not more) as success. This session will demonstrate how Participatory Design has been used for Insurgent Architectural Practices and share lessons that have been learned through the development of projects. 

BA4 – Panel: On the edges & reflection