Collectie Veenhuizen werd gevraagd te reflecteren en te presenteren op de internationale conferentie Prisons of the Future.
Irene Fortuyn (directeur Stichting KETTER&Co) en Laura Ferriere (ontwerper, Collectie Veenhuizen) presenteerden het The White Building project en gaven een reflectie op de andere presentaties vanuit hun rol als relatieve outsider.
Daar zijn interessante gedachten en constateringen uitgekomen. Onder andere over de rol die social design kan spelen in het gevangeniswezen en over het verschil in methodiek van ontwerpers en professionals uit het gevangeniswezen.
What are the main characteristics of a social design perspective?
An important characteristic of design whether social or not is that it is question driven and has a process in which the invention or the new is brought about by connecting existing things or phenomena. A designer can apply his skills and creativity to object, system, service or experience design. A designer in the field of social design as well as system service or experience design will always emerge him or herself in the situation in order to understand, get to know and map it. Understanding of the different perspectives and actors is important in that. Actors are not only the humans but also the non-humans like the surroundings, the (elements of the) architecture, the social contract and it's working in short the total context. - Irene Fortuyn, director of Stichting Ketter&Co (Collectie Veenhuizen)
What differences did you discover/observe between the social design perspective and what you heard in the different sessions in the conference?
The main difference I discovered concerns the processes and flexibility of the system. Protocol shapes outcome. It is the difference between the container ship and the speedboat. Both are needed and have their use. The flexibility of social design projects and the way they can be implemented as explorers and set up in testing grounds with their learning by doing methodology can provide input and information to the "container ship". Social design methodology could be used for embedded experiment and thus provide informed, experienced and tested suggestions for the penetrate system. - Irene Fortuyn, director of Stichting Ketter&Co (Collectie Veenhuizen)
What similarities did you discover between the social design perspective and what you heard in the different sessions at the conference and the kind of method participants use in developing prison concepts and alternatives as you observed during the conference?
I was first simply amazed to hear about prisons as potential "positive spaces".
I globally found that it was daring -especially from governmental organizations themselves to have such a positive vision in relation to the carceral reality. I think that questioning the fundaments of your own institution and overall system reveals a true innovative spirit.
Envisioning a future beyond expectations, when all we can hear in the past years is "crisis", demonstrates an entrepreneurial spirit, which I did not expect. Particularly when listening to the presentation of The Netherlands team, who put the inmate and the relevance of his self reliance as one of the pillars of their model. This audacious and most of all optimistic vision shared by all members of the conference is to me the most relevant connection to nowadays social design. Furthermore, describing prisons as potential "relics to the past" was visionary regarding the global overcrowding, poor conditions of the estates and budget cuts affecting most European prison systems, specially in regards to the public opinion about prisons. Acknowledging reality was also a similitude between our approaches. - Laura Ferriere, designer (This is Bouw), Collectie Veenhuizen