Design for Developing Communities (1) A seminar series related to the context and integrated design of Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship ventures in developing communities.
EDSGN 453 Design for Developing Communities (1)
The Design for Developing Communities seminar course grounds students in EDSGN 452, BIOE 401, and other related courses in the basics of user-centered / context-driven design, extreme affordability, systems thinking, research ethics, privilege systems, travel and fieldwork, and related issues for technology-based social ventures in developing communities. These seminars directly help students across various classes and professional programs with their Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship (HESE)-related ventures. Typically, three sections of this course are offered: one focusing on international ventures, one on local ventures and an honors section focusing on international ventures.
Designing appropriate products for customers inherently requires a thorough understanding of their needs. However, what happens when your target customers live in a developing country and have radically different needs than what you are accustomed to? Similarly, what happens when your audience lives in the United States, but in an unfamiliar environment? How do you know your product will be used by your intended customers? What pre-existing systems must your product work in harmony with?
Open to students of all majors, the seminar class prepares students working on HESE ventures to create sustainable enterprises in resource-constrained environments. Students are introduced to the contextual factors that must be taken into consideration throughout their design process. Relevant philosophies and methodologies that relate to the integrated design, business and implementation strategy development of social enterprises are introduced to the students in the seminar class. The objective is to light a fire and not fill a pail. The relevant methodologies and philosophies are then reinforced in an experiential manner in the concurrent design classes (like EDSGN 452, BIOE 401, etc.) where students work on their ventures.
Through the use of open discussion, videos, pictures, stories, and lectures, the course covers concepts such as systems-thinking, user-centered design, value creation, and effective communication. The seminar is highly interactive; students are encouraged to ask questions and provide examples of real-world situations that relate to the topics of conversation.
Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.