Everyday Experimenting

policy / citizenship / activism – sustainability / democracy / equality

Friday 24 May, 2019
1100 – 1800

Saletta Lab
La Triennale di Milano

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The clock on climate change is ticking ever faster and yet policymakers often appear to not understand this urgency. Is it time to stop waiting for answers and just get on with experimenting new ways of living? Can participation in designing novel forms of sustainable everyday attain sufficient traction? Or does it merely defer the bold decision making needed from policymakers? What are the limits of everyday experimenting?

Using Finland's XXII Triennale contribution, 'Everyday Experiments', as a starting point, the symposium builds on its messages and compares these with other, international perspectives. The event goes beyond the notion of design acting independently, to focus on its embedded role in organisations, institutions and communities. With inputs from activists, scientists, academics, project leaders and designers, it reviews how the interfaces between policymaking, citizenship and activism might work differently in the face of runaway climate change and growing inequalities. The emphasis is on debate and discussion.

Free admission: book tickets from Eventbrite


1100Welcome and introduction: Guy Julier, Aalto University
1115 Citizenship and Participation
Keynote 1: Thomas Markussen, University of Southern Denmark
1145Case Studies:Irma Sippola, Migrant Youth, Finland
Joni Saijets, Natural Resources Institute Finland
1230Respondents:Stefano Maffei, Politecnico di Milano
Fran Tonkiss, London School of Economics
Juha Leppänen, DemosHelsinki
1400 Policymaking and Experimentation
Keynote 2: Juha Leppänen, DemosHelsinki
1430Case Studies:Kaisa Spilling, Smart Kalasatama, Helsinki
Johanna Kotipelto, Place to Experiment, Finland
1500Respondents:Thomas Markussen, University of Southern Denmark
Francesca Rizzo and Alessandro Deserti, Politecnico di Milano
1615Keynote 3: Fran Tonkiss, London School of Economics and Political Science
1700Panel Discussion

Keynote Speakers

Thomas Markussen is Associate Professor and Co-Founder of the Social Design Research Unit, at the University of Southern Denmark. In his work, Markussen focuses on how design can be used as a political and critical aesthetic practice, notably in the fields of social design, design activism and design fiction. His publications include “The disruptive aesthetics of design activism: enacting design between art and politics” in Design Issues, “Disentangling the ‘social’ in social design’s engagement with the public realm” in CoDesign, and “The politics of design activism – from impure politics to parapolitics” appearing in the forthcoming book Design and Dissent.

Juha Leppänen is the Chief Executive of Demos Helsinki, leading independent think tank in the Nordics. Juha is a social scientist and previously worked as theme area lead at Demos Helsinki and CEO of Demos Effect. His portfolio of lead projects includes Design for Government for the Prime Minister's Office in Finland, a project where Demos Helsinki proposed a model that is now been implemented to utilize experimentation, behavioral insights and better evidence-base in policy design. In addition, Juha has led multiple strategy, foresight and innovation processes for both public and private institutions. Currently, Juha sits in the board of directors of multiple organizations and is an active advisor on strategy, policy and innovation and serves as a Royal Society of Arts Fellow.

Fran Tonkiss is an urban sociologist, based at the London School of Economics. Her work is concerned with urban inequalities, urban development and design, social and spatial divisions, and the socio-economic organisation of urban space. Her books include Space, The City and Social Theory and Cities by Design: the social life of urban form (2013). She is the co-author of Market Society: Markets and Modern Social Theory (2001 with Don Slater), and co-editor of Trust and Civil Society (2000 with Andrew Passey). She is currently managing editor of Economy and Society; she was previously an editor of the British Journal of Sociology, and remains a member of the editorial board. She is currently completing a book on urban inequalities.