Social value of Design?

August 25th, 2008, 3:01 pm

MoShake
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After takin' some notes from the world we live, my mind posted on myself this questions:

- What is the social value of design?

- How we can measure the "value of design" in these days compared to the quality of life in first world/developed nations vs third world/developing nations?

- What is the strenght of design?

....

August 26th, 2008, 8:18 am

no_spec
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Add up the value of all the stuff there is, then subtract everything not designed = value of design!

August 26th, 2008, 10:12 am

purplepeopledesign
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The financial size of Apple can be attributed to the designs of the iMac and the iPod.

:)ensen.
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August 26th, 2008, 12:14 pm

no_spec
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what is the currency of social value?

August 26th, 2008, 1:44 pm

zippyflounder
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purplepeopledesign wrote:The financial size of Apple can be attributed to the designs of the iMac and the iPod.

:)ensen.
software design

August 26th, 2008, 2:53 pm

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zippyflounder wrote:
purplepeopledesign wrote:The financial size of Apple can be attributed to the designs of the iMac and the iPod.

:)ensen.
software design
50/50

ID is the hook that snares, software is the addiction that keeps 'em coming back. Just like crack.

August 29th, 2008, 11:40 am

MoShake
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Consider the currency of social value as the "amount" of improvement on society thanks to design.

what is that amount?

How we can measure it?

August 29th, 2008, 11:57 am

no_spec
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Philosophy has a unit of measure called a "util". literally some amount of utility a person percieves to gain from something/anything material or not.

you could start this Phd dissertation there...

Re:

April 23rd, 2010, 5:48 pm

MoShake
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no_spec wrote:what is the currency of social value?


ok , that makes the "big picture " eve more big right?... the therm social isn't valued based on same perspectives.

Just consider the different kinds of culture in every continent.

so... global design is the only practical source for value measure? .. or it should be start at local happenings?

Re:

April 23rd, 2010, 6:03 pm

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no_spec wrote:what is the currency of social value?
Happiness.
All dots connect, even the tiny blue one

Re: Social value of Design?

April 24th, 2010, 4:08 pm

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product tank
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Does design have, or have to have, a social value?

If designs purpose is, through products to improve tasks to make them easier, from peeling potatoes to travelling from A-B, no task is really social, in the past tasks may have been done in a social group (women washing clothes together etc) but that was not because of design - that was almost because of a lack of it.

If design is a conduit for technology ie. the packaging that houses the mobile phone, then it's not the design that has a social value, it's the technology. In many instances this technology rather than unite us is distancing us. The young and old technology devide. The social networking sites, that rather than keep you in touch allow you to stay more distant etc.

If a designer creates a piece of public infrastructure - park bench etc does it have a social value? People sit on the floor, throw down a picnic blanket, sit on rocks. The fact that someone placed a piece of design in a convinient meeting area, does not suggest that that man made object has a social value better than any other object.

If design makes an object look beautiful, you see someone using it and it allows you to spark up a conversation with that person, because you also have one or want one and want to know what it's like etc. Is it the design or the fact that marketeers have made you believe that this is a must have etc? If you wanted to spark up a conversation, you could have chosen anything 'Hey, you have a beard like mine! I haven't seen that on a woman before'.... :wink:

I'd argue that design might not have a social value - just my two cents.

Re: Social value of Design?

April 24th, 2010, 4:16 pm

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I always think of design as bringing a little joy. Joy has social value.

Re: Social value of Design?

April 24th, 2010, 6:25 pm

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product tank wrote: I'd argue that design might not have a social value - just my two cents.
Within the context of the relationship the user has with a product I would agree, but that doesn't exist within a vacuum. I think the measure of happiness or joy a product gives to a user expands socially, consider Apple's customers as an easy example. On a one on one basis between an Apple customer and their product there is a limited measurement of happiness, but consider the sharing of experiences between Apple customers and their friends and family about that limited measure, it is something that spreads. People like to see their friends and family happy, they will socially accept the things that provide that. This is part of what has made Apple so successful, and if Apple is successful they can make more money to develop more products to perpetuate the cycle meanwhile making more of their suppliers happy with contracts and business. Outside of Apple consider how this expands into capitalism, the economy, and further technological development.
All dots connect, even the tiny blue one

Re: Social value of Design?

April 24th, 2010, 6:30 pm

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There was a CNN interview on "Business Ethics" and the interviewee(some financial expert) said that in Business school, they teach students that the purpose of business is to protect the interest of its stakeholders. They didn't teach the students anything about improving people's quality of life.

If the business that design is trying to serve isn't about improving people's quality of life, then it's very hard for design to be the "savior", because it's not.

Not saying that design cannot add this nice quality to the business offerings, but if you(the designer) cannot convince your budget owners that this will benefit his business and its stakeholders and make them more bucks, then to them it's a risk. Ultimately, it's all about the priority of the business. If the business runners are truly about their customers and not about keeping their own pay checks coming, then designers will have a much easier job.

Re: Social value of Design?

April 24th, 2010, 9:27 pm

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MoShake wrote: - How we can measure the "value of design" in these days compared to the quality of life in first world/developed nations vs third world/developing nations?

....
You're onto something here. We designers would like to feel we're the 'good guys' in all of this, but we're not. Well...it's relative. We're the ones being....er... less bad.

We debate over things like whether an I-pod creates better society compared to say a MP3 player and would like to feel that design somehow made this a better place. That slight improvement of lifestyle is NOTHING compared to the life-saving ideas we should be creating for the Third World. We're like a bunch of Romans debating whether red or green grapes taste better while the rest of Europe is starving.

Sorry for the downer, just felt like stirring the pot a little. I'll get off my soapbox and get back to sitting on my ass and doing nothing about it now.

.
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