Design engagements at the margins of the global South: De-centering the "expert" within me

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Conceiving everyone as a potential designer and believing in local peoples' informed understandings and agentic capabilities in addressing local problems, my design research journey was committed to opening up avenues for sustained transformations in the underserved spaces of rural eastern India. In my design engagements, we (community members and I) contributed in three design projects, namely design for community development (DfCD), information design for development (IDfD), and design for grassroots innovation (DfGD). In my design journey, I sincerely questioned/challenged my presumptions and design approaches as well as reflexively reoriented myself to make the design processes culturally meaningful and contextually appropriate. Being constantly cognizant about minute traces of superiority (and sense of indispensability) within me, being willing to challenge, modify, and rediscover myself continually, as well as privileging and situating local and indigenous perspectives and knowledge at the center of design processes, characterize some of the key learning of my design journey.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5675
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Volume11
Issue number20
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2019
Externally publishedYes

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Keywords

  • Culture
  • India
  • Privilege
  • Reflexivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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