DS 93: Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education (E&PDE 2018), Dyson School of Engineering, Imperial College, London. 6th - 7th September 2018

Year: 2018
Editor: Erik Bohemia, Ahmed Kovacevic, Lyndon Buck, Peter Childs, Stephen Green, Ashley Hall, Aran Dasan
Author: Sheldrick, Leila; Dasan, Aran
Series: E&PDE
Institution: Imperial College London, United Kingdom
Section: Collaboration and Industrial Involvement in Design and Engineering Education
Page(s): 205-210
ISBN: 978-1-912254-02-6


This paper considers the planning, methodology and pitfalls in creating an educational collaboration in an international design project that deeply engages students in their new translocated context whilst avoiding surface-level engagement with the host community. Projects such as these offer many benefits to those involved, however could be accused of ‘Design Tourism’ - where the primary purpose of the project is the educational or personal development of the visitors, and the resulting ideas are left without any potential for realistic implementation. This problem is of critical importance for design and engineering educators who both want their students to learn and want their students’ projects to have genuine legacy and impact. This paper explores this tension, and how this relates to the role of the designer working and learning across local and globalised contexts, and the role of an educator in designing an appropriate and effective learning experience. Building upon a legacy of annual international design projects, this paper uses ‘GoGlobal Chile 2017’ as a case study. The context and educational design of the project are outlined, and the resulting projects are presented, where 74 designers from the United Kingdom and Chile worked together to develop a series of innovation projects exploring the topic of food security. This paper concludes by considering factors for creating successful international design projects through a focus on building team cohesiveness and setting appropriate student expectations of legacy. By balancing these factors, students can be empowered to co-create impactful, contextualised projects whilst developing key skills to collaborate internationally in the future.

Keywords: International collaboration, sustainable development, design tourism, cultural transfer


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