FACILITATING DESIGN FOR THE UNKNOWN: AN INCLUSIVE INNOVATION DESIGN JOURNEY WITH A SAN COMMUNITY IN THE KALAHARI DESERT
Editor: Boujut, Jean-François ; Cascini, Gaetano ; Ahmed-Kristensen, Saeema ; Georgiev, Georgi V. ; Iivari, Netta
Author: Winschiers-Theophilus, Heike (1); Virmasalo, Veera (2); Samuel, Marly M. (1); Stichel, Brit (3); Afrikaner, Helena E. (1)
Institution: 1: Department of Computer Science, Namibia University of Science and Technology, Windhoek, Namibia; 2: Department of Culture and Society, Malmö University, Malmö, Sweden; 3: Department of Information and Communication, Flensburg University of Applied Sciences, Flensburg, Germany
DOI number: https://doi.org/10.35199/ICDC.2020.33
This paper presents a 2-year collaboration that explored how we as design researchers may support an isolated and marginalised indigenous San community to innovate technology products for affluent consumer markets on the other side of the world. The goal was to design a product that brings income to the community, builds skills while facilitating a creative design of self-expression. Community-based co-design was integrated into an inclusive innovation approach. The resulting product was a series of fridge magnet souvenirs using augmented reality technology. As the community was designing not only for a technology but also for an audience unknown to them, we conceptualised the unknown within the process. Our role extended to facilitating negotiations between commercial goals and communities’ creative self-expression. We present the appropriated community-based co-design process and reflect on how our facilitation of the unknown affected the process, the creativity and the self-expression by the San participants.