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Innovation School

This group of students are special.

Because they are the Covid-19 students?


They’re not even special because they had to contend with the global pandemic and its repercussions.

These post-graduate students from Innovation School in 2020 are special regardless. They were engaging with complex societal issues before anyone knew what Covid-19 was. They knew the systems in place in the world were in serious need of change before “social distancing” entered the lexicon; they were aware of the socio-political contexts we live in and with which we engage on a daily basis could be different when “lockdown” sounded like an upcoming Jason Statham film that no-one really wanted to see; and they were ready to challenge the way we do and organise things before touchscreens became ubiquitous, never mind before you couldn’t touch “your own face”.

In Innovation School we pride ourselves on creating change with positive impact. Sure, you’ll see projects here that are related to the global pandemic but you’ll also see things that aren’t and other work that has been magnified by the recent situation that we’ve found ourselves in. This is what we do.

The “new normal”?

Meet the preferable normal, the abnormal normal, the different normal, the provocative normal, the altered normal, the speculative normal, the normal for debate, the normal we haven’t thought of yet and the normal that’s just weird enough to work.

The Innovation School normal.

Unguilty Pleasures by Jeremiasz Rzenno

Continue Reading Unguilty Pleasures by Jeremiasz Rzenno

Unguilty Pleasures (2020), Research Report

Design Outcome – Unguilty Pleasures – Homepage

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Design Outcome – Unguilty Pleasures – Navigation

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Design Outcome – Unguilty Pleasures – Interactive submission form

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Design process

Engaging with workers – reflective artifacts

Engaging with workers – reflective artifacts

refined design brief and taxonomy

Brown crab, velvet crab and lobster landings in Scotland

Ocean farming

From The Multitude To The People

"Election Is Not Democracy"

From The Multitude To The People

"Election Is Not Democracy" — Master's Thesis

Research Process


Building A Research Framework

Representation In Principle And In Practice

"We Blame Democracy When We Should Be Blaming Representation"

I looked at representation in the lens of democracy and showed how and why the concept in practice was problematic and why representative democracy is not representative. I concluded that being represented as we are today is a loss of power for citizens as they have very little control over the actions of their representatives. More over being represented through the vote of the majority interpreted as the general will, is also problematic as it lacks actual representativeness. How majority is formed, calculated and how it operates influence the results of the process and potentially increases inequalities. We end up "blaming democracy when we should we blaming the instability of representation."* Jacques Rancière

From The System To The People

I looked at the French political system as a case study. I wanted to understand and analyse its philosophy, history, structure, interactions, practices and the roles played by experts and public institutions because the « problem » seemed to be structural. I was hoping this will enable me to define precisely fractures in the political system and identify entry points for small-short circuits or even restructurations.

The French Political System Of Representation

From The System To The People

Here I started building a visual language to define the political system and the different interactions between its elements without words.

The French Political System Of Representation

In Principle

The French Political System Of Representation

In Principle

The French Political System Of Representation

In Practice

The French Political System Of Representation

In Practice

A Shift In My Research

From The System To The People /// From The People To The System

Citizen initiatives and experts kept coming up. This was forcing me to recognize that people were affecting the system themselves and were not waiting for things to change. I should have understood that from the beginning as The Yellow Vests crisis triggered this research by shaking traditional modes of political representation.

In Between The System And The People

Initiatives And Movements Happening At Different Levels

Moving Into Engagements

Exploring Different Arguments And Discourses Around Participation

I started to look at the problematics of current forms of citizen participations and by whom, when and how participation is fostered. Slowly my research moved into engagements as I was discovering different modalities, methods and level of engagement. I have chosen to engage with those experts specifically because they give me good overview of different discourses about participation but also about how this participation relates to the system and how it is initiated.

Levels Of Engagement

From Démocratie Ouverte Open Source Documents and Discussions with Experts

Entry points for civic engagement in the cycle of political life

From Démocratie Ouverte Open Source Documents and Discussions with Experts

Network Theories

Interactions, Assembling and co-existance Between Systems

Communities started to appear as potential counter-powers. As this topic is political I didn’t want my work to get resumed to political divides between left or right discourses. I tried to search for analogies to support my arguments. I decided to look at network theories and animal and vegetal philosophy. Our system is a constellation of networks and these philosophies have the benefit to replace us in a wider ecosystem which gives my research another legitimacy, beyond political ideology. They are incredible sources of inspiration and offer us spaces and perspective to dream. Ultimately putting in perspective experts‘ point of view with them allow me to compare current interactions and modes of assembling, of co existence, and see what can be improved or challenged.

Comparative: Similarities and Oppositions Between discourses, ideologies and network theories

Parasitic Relationships Ensuring Democracy and Democratisation

Our political systems need to be apprehended as unstable and flexible structures which is not comfortable. If the steps, processes and actions constituting a political cycle were open and receptive to interactions with elements from multiple sources then power would be circulating. But equally, we don’t want to institute all initiatives and movements. There will always be a need for positions challenging the system coming from spaces regulated by different times, (social) rules and hierarchies. This is not about standardising procedures but rather seeing conflict and parasitic relationships between parallel systems as necessary to ensure democracy and democratisation. Seeing communities as parallel networks would allow autonomy in doing and mutual inclusion. There is not a single answer to representation. It seems that we need several approaches, some coming from the system, other from the people, but also some sitting in between, some challenging the structure of the system and others playing by its rules. While animal philosophy and network theories legitimatise people’s claim to share power it also show that hierarchic structures can be necessary. Experts conversations confirm this as well.

What Can Be Challenged Or Improved

Shaping Common Cultures Of Democracy

The question of representation is a complex and subjective one. Improvements can come from both the system and the people. There is plenty of room for that. The problem was never really about representation itself, but about all that it presupposes. To me, what seems primordial is to create common cultures of democracy. Ones that (re)shape our relationships to ourselves and others, to public matters and to the public sphere. This exercise was held for centuries by the same people. Today it seems like we need to collectively (re)define.


Dissent,too, is a way to engage with those in power.

Civic participation is what drive democracies. But our system of governance values quiet, dutiful civic actions such as voting, volunteering, lobbying much more than critical actions such as dissent or protest. The later are often met with ire and force while the other is hailed as a sacred duty. Alexis de Tocqueville once said that the health of a democratic society may be measured by the quality of functions performed by private citizens. That is the central theme of this project.

Expressions of Dissent

Dissent to me is the public manifestation & exhibition of collective distrust in traditional institutions.

Dissent can take on various forms. From trolling politicians on social media, boycotts & non cooperation with authorities to marches and hunger strikes in some cases.

Dissent as public claims-making

Dissent is a disruption to ‘life as normal’, It presents ‘an alternative to promised utopia’. Public dissent usually becomes a time when people take over the public policy debate.

The Taxonomy of Dissent

While no social movement is the same, I decided to classify them into these categories for easier understanding.

The anatomy of dissent

Through this project, I sought to create a taxonomy and anatomy of dissent. If the taxonomy familiarizes us to the different types of structures of a protest movement, the anatomy tells us about the people that populate it.


Even though social movements are more likely to be successful if they are nonviolent and engage more than 5.5% of the population, there is stark gap between how people think about social movements. When asked to say 5 words about protest, most people said the word violence and over tow-thirds of the people I interviewed said that they did not engage in causes either after or before attending a 'protest/ march'.


Before I started working on proposing any kind of an idea, I thought about the values I wanted my proposal to reflect.

WE the People- The Museum of Dissent

WE the people, combines public pedagogy and participatory design to create a Museum of Dissent. It is a co-curated and co-created space where citizens can educate themselves about the various ways of critically participating in government. The basis of the idea is simple: it is by the people, for the people and of the people.

The Role of the museum

In order for the museum to be equitable & just, it had to serve a diverse and expanded audience and through this exercise, I tried to outline the exact roles I wanted the museum to fill as an institution in before, during and after times of civic crisis.

How the museum works

This is a step by step description of how the museum functions and how people can get involved in the working of this space.

Dear Democracy, Dear Protester

As part of my project, I asked people to fill in postcards marked Dear Democracy and Dear Protester. These are just a few examples of postcards I have received so far. This seeks to start conversations and promote solidarity among people.

Virtual Museum Tour

The citizens can also access all these exhibits virtually all around the world through the website and the online platform. They can also apply to have the museum travel to their city where pop-up exhibitions could be held or to arrange workshops in their schools, universities or community centers.

Not Fit to Print: Exploring Democracy within Public Media Systems

This project looked at who owns the media, the issues with this and sought to address the problems with the current media model driven by capitalism. Alternatives do exist though and a citizen-owned media that is more reflective of their needs is certainly possible and attainable.

Citizen-owned media

Instead of a media that’s divisive it could create connections and foster a better sense of community. Instead of invoking outrage and pessimism it could promote and celebrate the everyday good whilst also being mindful of the importance of reporting the truth. Instead of voicing narrow-minded, singular views, it could be better at providing a platform for diverse voices more representative of the people it serves. Instead of an agenda set on pushing profits, it could put people first and offer more support for independent businesses to boost local economies.

Media Reform Proposals

Here I've highlighted some of the proposals put forward by the Media Reform Coalition and Caincross Review. Although there were some points I disagreed with, there were others that had credibility. For the ones highlighted here, there's a strong focus on the importance of public interest news, being independent of government and the need to redefine funding structures.

Article Review / Research Activity

In order to gain better insight into the current state of media I reviewed articles from the 'main' papers and highlighted uses of language, tone and the type of information being told/not told. I also opened up this activity to the general public to gain their thoughts and opinions too. Above, are a few of their responses. What I found was a media that's a mouthpiece for the elite, not for the people; a media that is singular and narrow-minded; and instead of holding those in power to account, they are instead given more space to voice their opinions.

Workshop / Imagining a Fairer Media in a 'Fictional' Town

I facilitated a workshop to collaborate on ideas for what a fairer media might look like. Above are some of the slides from the workshop (it had to be done virtually). To enable the discussion, I created a fictional town with characters that my particpants could discuss ideas through the lens of. I walked them through a number of different scenarios to come up with ideas on: how to fund a locally-owned media, how to report on stories, and how to publish these stories. We also discussed what some of the future impacts these decisions might have. The town, characters and scenarios were all created based on the research I'd done so far, so although fictional they're also probable. This workshop enabled me to include more voices than just my own and to come up with ideas outside of my own biases.

Above are some of the ideas that came out of the workshop. There was a lot of focus on being accessible, diverse and inclusive.

Future Work

The work I've been doing doesn't feel complete yet and there are many other avenues which I didn't get the chance to fully explore. Talk of media reform is an important one, we can't continue to accept the current system of profits of people and a media filled with lies and misinformation set only on pushing the agendas of the rich and powerful. We need better platforms to have a voice, be represented and be able to hold those in power to account. Concentrated media ownership has led to singular, narrow-minded views and will continue to do so as long as they can get away with it. It's time for a change and we should dare to imagine something different.

Doric Town

A board game aims to protect dialect heritage by sharing vocabulary and stories.

Collaborating for a zero-waste fashion community

Data Analysis

Data Analysis

Qualitative Research Method

Background Information

Initial Design Process

Initial And Field Research

Tangible Samples

Fabric Chart

Online platform - Mural Tool

Analysis of all the methods used during this project


Service Blueprint

Collaborative System

Interconnection Points

Collaborative System

Footwear Manufacturer alongside the shoe designer

Flower Of Hope

Cross-pollination Concept

Outcome from the fabrics

Fabric Layering with zig-zag stitches

Fabric Layering

Rag Rug Weaving

Hand embroidery

Inspiring from the Mauritian and Scotland flag colours, this unique piece of cloth was created.

SIE Competition September 2020

My project was judged as Highly Commendable in September 2020- SIE

To my dear furniture

Innovation design and collaborative creativity

By Jiahui Zou (Garffee)

Continue Reading To my dear furniture


Furniture History Booklet

This booklet is printed by the furniture company and delivered to customers along with the new furniture. The booklet could record stories about furniture (E.g. The pet cat at home was in a bad mood one day, so he scratching the armrest of the chair and leaving paw prints.) also it could record the condition of the furniture and how customers feel about the furniture. Three views and perspective views could simply mark the parts that need to be described. The significance of this booklet is that when the furniture has been used for many years and people want to throw it away, by reading the stories, they might recall many of the times it has accompanied them. At this point, one of five sustainable design strategies 'Reduce' is used: Designed for longer life (e.g. emotionally durable design). This booklet is through emotion to maintain the life of the furniture. When the furniture needs to be resold, this booklet might attract the next customer to understand the time experienced by the furniture, know that this is a piece of furniture with stories. Also, they could understand the previous owner’s mood and the conditions of the furniture, instead of just the old and new appearances to determine whether to buy.


Service blueprint

The entire process is based on a website named 'xxx of Furniture'. The site should collaborate with furniture companies, which provide the furniture history booklet to the customers. I improved the booklet: add a QR code for customers to scan it. It will bring them to the website and record the data online. Once people finished stories, the site can collect the data and pass to the furniture company after-sale department or designers which can help them improve their products. When customers go back to the main page, they can try to share their opinions about old furniture and discuss with other furniture lovers. The site team including designers and furniture experts who might help them solve the problems, and if they need components or tools, furniture company can provide secondary service as profits that could stimulate companies to cooperate with the website. The event as part of the website is a future plan. It is the website offline activity, people who chat online and share stories could meet together in the activity. This can enrich the communication that originally had no sense of reality. Participants might enlarge their socialization and build up their confidence.



Instilling pro-environmental behaviours among citizens to create sustainable neighbourhoods.

Can design use these biases to nudge people ? Many scientist and psychologists are now seeing the importance of understanding behaviour and nudging towards climate action. Through the research process it became evident that I did not intend to focus on one specific behaviour , as sustainability was a journey with one success action resulting us to take the next action which was uncovered through various interviews.


The site I chose was White City Estate which is a ward in the Hammersmith and Fulham borough here in London. It has one of the most diverse neighbourhoods with people coming from various class structures with 52 percent of the people here living in social housing. Unfortunately it is also identified as one of the most deprived and least affluent area in the borough.

Why I chose a social housing estate?

It's important for us to get diverse voices heard in these conversations. A saying from the environmentalist Sunita Narain inspired this thought with a provoking question - Is it accessible, is it inclusive, is it diverse, is it reciprocal? This thinking stayed with me throughout my design process. I was also inspired by Bristol taking the same course of action during Lockdown to make environmental sustainability more inclusive to people from all class structures. With this in mind and initial desk research, my design challenge moulded to questions around design interventions instilling pro environmental behaviours among individuals

Various Research methods used

A brief summary of the engagement tools I used to understand behaviours of those living in White City are : 1. Using optimism as a nudge to spark conversations followed by printed questionnaires to fulfil social distancing rules. 2. Tags on a gate tool to understand values and wants of residents. 3. I then sent out 2 sets of digital questionnaires via various platforms to understand residents their behaviour and interaction with space and the term sustainability. This was also to understand their sustainability journey and the barriers a few heroes faced on their paths. Alongside this, I held a workshop, few other one on one interviews via whatsapp, or face to face and a walking tour.

Testing the role of optimism as an engagement tool

One of the engagement tools that worked best with residents to talk about sustainability was the optimism nudge card I designed. Working as a volunteer distributing food during COVID allowed me to have conversations with people from within the community. However, this was a very delicate moment where people cued waiting for food after receiving a token. The food distribution charities would save food that would otherwise go into landfill from various vendors and measured success based on how much food wastage they saved. Using this same method of celebration and optimism, I designed a tool to play ‘the role of optimism’ and change otherwise uncomfortable moments in moments of deep reflection. As the lockdown started easing I used this tool at charity sales leading to them requesting more for ongoing and future rail sales.

Spotting interactive zones with potential for design interventions

I then mapped out the city based on the walking tour and advice I received from residents, picking out areas with the most traffic flow and spaces that had potential and screamed for intervention ( this was also done to play with our contextual biases ) .

Turning Point

With all of the information I gathered from nearly 30 to 40 participants at different point of time including now I understood the complexity of communities and how different knots had to be untied at a time. This also led me to identify the different types of stakeholders at play.

Stakeholder Interviews - Environmental Enthusiasts

Changes in our context can influence or activate our biases and heuristics by nudging people to favour more sustainable outcomes (Jensen & Hovgaard, 2020). Based on the variation of data collected from the residents, I identified emerging behaviours demonstrated by the residents. As you can see in this slide I identified various stakeholders who I saw as complete heroes and environmental enthusiasts who would be the facilitators of these 3 design ideas. Their skills would increase a positive feedback loop and feed into the gardening space as a conduit for people to exchange views, perspectives and ideas. This would inturn act as social norms and instil values of pro-environmentalism

Using Behavioural Science

Based on research, observations and further analysing these behaviours with psychologists, I created a diagram to visually see the behaviours and motivators I experimented with through my design. INSIGHT STATEMENTS from Residents : TRUST : People had a greater level of trust towards others when they were introduced by someone from their cultural, religious or other friend circles. ­­ SENSE OF OWNERSHIP: One of the things people strongly feel about their immediate environment is the lack of input, knowledge and agency they have towards the space resulting in a lack of empathy. IMPORTANCE OF SPACE: When asked about experiences in White City back in the day, people’s stories aligned with interactive spaces more than people. Environmental structures seemed to be more vivid showing the importance between space and people.


Using the behaviours at play and what was required to reverse negative into positive behaviours inspired this proposal. The final design has 3 services that interplay and depend on each other. These were inspired and created based on the various forms of activating specific postibe behaviours as seen in previous slide. Using contextual biases and a creation of social norms within the community plays a significant but invisible role in all the three components. As you can see the 3 services aim to help the identified stakeholder types to interact with eachother in order to impart pro-environmental behaviours.


Under the umbrella of 'White City cares', the three different services will work together. Using environmental settings as a space to be inspired by people and nature, along with digital platforms to have a wider audience.

PART 1A: Micro-allotments

Each small square plot will be allotted to tenants in surrounding blocks during peak yield months for a maximum of 1 year. These green spaces that are otherwise only used by dog-owners have the potential to becoming spaces for people to connect with others in their neighbourhood and learn about the processes of how the ecosystem works with an indicator we all connect with - food and plants. Using methods of rainwater harvesting and composting within the space also creates an awareness for these natural resources. Through growing, people then understand the different parts of the ecosystem vital to our everyday living.

PART 1B : Community-led workshops

Through research it became evident that there were a few experts in the field and a few environmental enthusiasts. The community already had so much to learn from each other. The workshop would be a form to get people from various cultural backgrounds and blocks connecting through shared interests and exchanging forms of knowledge. This also increases self-efficacy among individuals, highlighting their strengths and value within the community.

PART 2 : Open source nudge kit

This nudge kit was inspired by the request from charities for the optimism engagement tool. This was further complemented with nudges to create empathy to spaces and also increasing self-efficacy.

PART 2: Open source nudge kit

PART 3; Outreach

Third is outreach which uses the insight of trust - seeing peoples stories and journey on the 'White City stories' instagram and facebook page would further empower citizens to do more. This builds empathy through stories and narratives further leading to instilling social norms of pro-environmentalism.

What and How ?

Using a systems thinking approach, ‘White City cares’ carefully threads on the idea of leading sustainable lifestyles through simple nudges and direct forms of communication as seen in the image above. The insights gained (outer circle) from interviews and engagement act as tools that help facilitate and motivate the different services at play.


The feedback was overwhelming with residents looking for it to become a reality through community effort. Some really loved the idea of the empathy nudge tests: Seeing the tree on their street been given a name made them happy and proud. They appreciated that the language of sustainability under ‘White city cares' was accessible and stressed on the importance of outreach through platforms other than social media. Micro allotment ideas were well received with many saying that the space would finally be theirs and not just for the dogs. Many residents stressed on the need for ways to get their kids and young adults involved and using the space to learn from as they will be the future. As a next step, the idea would be around getting the community participating in any infrastructure changes implemented by the council.

A workbook and visual aid employed in interviews

Interviews with residents were carried out with a workbook-type engagement tool to help them self-reflect their waste disposal routine. Design for Intent toolkit (Dan Lockton, 2010) was also employed to see which environmental/cognitive factor can affect their change.


Through the workbook, found that the environmental crisis story sounds too broad for residents so they needed some closer story to encourage their intrinsic drive. Also, they needed easier environmental setting for better recycling.

Deeper story between residents and refuse collectors

Through further in-depth interviews, found that the lack of interaction was making a vicious cycle. Yet opportunities were discovered - some residents cared about workers' working condition and refuse collectors were encouraged by them. Also, they needed a platform where residents can ask some questions to refuse collectors and refuse collectors help the general public do better recycling.

Storyboard of the service

The empathy-derived recycling model consists of three pillars: 1) Environmental setting (easy-sorting-out bags), 1) Caring & responsibility (an introduction card of refuse collectors with their essential messages to residents and an ID card for residents' self-check) and 3) Recycling practice (deposit return scheme), to achieve change most effectively.

Project Title



Data Analysis

Data Synthesis






The project proposed a freely accessible publication to inspire and empower citizens to form new relationships with their surroundings.

Why design for serendipity?

In the modern city, chunks of space are meticulously allocated to individual functions: retail parks, office districts, residential suburbs. This reinforces the habit of allocating our time strictly between these activities, jetting between them in our cars. The lifestyle this propagates can be isolating and alienating, with little opportunity for participating in public life. The principle of homophily means we are more likely to form social bonds with those who are similar to ourselves, not only that, we are also more likely to be surrounded by these people physically in our neighbourhoods. Similarly to our online existence, this can form political and ideological echo chambers, leading to ignorance, bigotry and political polarization. It also feels like a missed opportunity, given the “melting pot” analogy of the city, and the density and diversity it provides.

What role could serendipity play in creating better cities?

I see a direct opportunity here for serendipity to help us close the gap between what is and what could be. Serendipity can help us tap into the resource of density and diversity, and through unexpected encounters help us rediscover a more sociable and exciting city.

How do we create serendipitous spaces?

Through my reading, I identified 4 key areas to consider when designing for serendipity in the public realm.


The project proposed citydweller zine as a platform for citizens to connect over the one thing they all have in common: the city where they live. Filled with a range of contributions, local news, events and stories, its aims are to empower and inspire citizens to engage and connect with the public spaces around them. By spending more time outside, participating in outdoor activities and exploring our surroundings, we create more opportunities for new encounters, serendipitous or not.

The process behind the project

Master project

Wellbeing and the Urban Environment in Mestre.

I explored Mestre - Venice's suburb - known for issues linked to criminality, marginalisation and socio-economic-health disparities. After a deep research, I was able to find a "custom-made" solution for Mestre's citizens.

Continue Reading Master project

Mapping the NEIC - parks which remained open during Covid-19

Process and visualisations

Continue Reading Process and visualisations

Activity Pack


Exploding School: The Potential for Outdoor Learning and Play Space in North Inner City Dublin

Continue Reading Exploding School: The Potential for Outdoor Learning and Play Space in North Inner City Dublin

Narural Light in Learning Environments



What could be the preferable future of death? How might we create a system that provides an accessible, dignified, personalized, and therapeutic experience to the users while aiding nature preservation and climate mitigation efforts?

What is it?

A new death service run by nature preservation charities that offers human composting. The service comprises of a series of steps, all of them optional, but profit from each of them contributes to habitat and wildlife protection. For this speculation, I’ve looked at the possibilities that human composting or "recomposition" could unlock. Recomposition produces a large amount of rich soil which can be divided into many parts and used in a variety of ways. One can choose to donate it, take it home, ship it to relatives, scatter it in one or multiple locations, or even buy a tree or potted plant planted in the recomposed soil. As well as a new system, the concept also proposes spatial and material guidelines for facilitating this new praxis.

The memorial grounds

The memorial grounds are where memorial markers are placed. Although it is all optional, some might still need a monument to memorialize their name. We also need a space to express gestures towards the dead. Physical acts of remembering like touching a name on a headstone are tangible ways we let ourselves know that we are taking real action to remember someone, a sort of small personal ritual. While there is not yet a finished design for the space, I created a sketch of what these spaces might feel like. The grounds must be planned in a way that’s not disruptive to the environment. It should be visually distinguished from nature to signify an added layer of meaning, without imposing on the landscape. As existing nature charities already form a wide network around the UK, the service could be easily available wherever there is demand for it.

memorial markers

When it comes to the markers themselves, the shape should allow for a variety of actions. Emphasis should be on the sensation of touch, so material and surface texture must be taken into consideration. They also need to be durable and fit to stay outside virtually forever. The material might also be reactive to light, heat, or moisture to give a visual response when touched.

individuality and personalization

The markers should also be personalized to best represent the person they’re commemorating. Inspired by a story told to me by an end-of-life-doula about a family that did a DIY funeral, I thought a way to do that might be to have the option of designing and/or making the marker yourself out of recycled or repurposed materials. This could be a way for the family to come together and let them take more control over their situation, while also being sustainable and cost effective. As a possible direction I thought about Precious Plastic, a company that provides open source plans for plastic processing machines, and offers guidance on production. A variety of other memorial objects like flowerpots, urns, or take-home tree markers could also be made this way.

ceremony and meditation

To facilitate rituals, ceremonial pavilion-type structures should be available close to the memorial grounds. These could be used for funerals and memorials, but could also accommodate meditation when not in use. They should be kept open so they can be used at any time. It might be necessary for these structures to occasionally be extended to accommodate large ceremonies and closed off to protect against bad weather. Also for shelter and meditation, smaller structures could be installed throughout an area.

details in nature and tactile experiencing

Focusing on the details in nature gives us an opportunity to pay attention to things we might normally overlook. It helps us appreciate them, allowing us to see the forest AND the trees. From the perspective of mindfulness, focusing on small details and the sensory experience of nature helps ground us in our bodies and break the cycle of rumination that often comes with complicated heavy emotions like grief. The interventions in the land should therefore be made to pull focus towards certain views or natural features.

what about the money?

A quote containing a suggested donation amount according to chosen options is presented, but the user may donate as much as they can anonymously. Coupled with existing financing mechanisms, Payment for Ecosystem Services schemes, volunteer work, and a larger number of donators, combined revenue could be able to cover those who need but can’t afford the service.

user storyboard pt.1

After a family member dies, the family decides to use the charities’ services. They explore their options and make a call. They can either deliver the body or have it picked up to be stored until the funeral. They have an informative conversation with a representative to discuss their wishes.

user storyboard pt.2

After discussing as a family, they contact the charity to make funeral arrangements. They don’t need to decide on what to do with the remains or if they want a memorial marker yet because the recomposition process takes thirty days, giving them plenty of time to decide what they want to do, and if needed they can make the decision well after picking up the remains. They decide to do the ceremony in the site’s ceremonial pavilion. They notify the extended family to let them know of the arrangements.

user storyboard pt.3

After the funeral, they decide to make a marker for the memorial ground. They’re able to choose the colours and textures they think best represents their loved one. If they had opted for cremation, they could have also made an urn at the trust’s making facilities. They decide to buy a plant from the trust planted in the recomposed soil and make the planter themselves. They request that part of the soil be shipped to everyone who wanted some, and take their plant and the rest of the soil home. Some of the relatives also buy a tree from the trust and plant it in their gardens, and a part of the family decide to install another marker closer to their home.

user storyboards pt.4

They received a quote from the trust with a suggested donation amount for each of the services they used. They decide to pay what they can at once, and the rest through an annual donation plan.

user storyboards pt.5

As time passes, several trees grow from the loved one’s soil. The grieving friends and family visit the memorial grounds and walk through the surrounding woodland. Some have joined grief walking groups organized by EOLDUK, where they found support amongst new friends. Every time someone visits the memorial grounds, they are also spending time in nature which on it’s own has physical and mental health benefits. They use the spaces to rest and meditate, and every visit slowly helps them grow. After a few years, they throw a lively memorial in the pavilion for their lost family member where they laugh, cry, dance and tell stories.


If you would like to learn more about the project, the research that went into it, or the specific insights that informed it, view the Personal Project Journal here.


Sensory Approach for Diversity in Land Engagement - MDes Thesis

Continue Reading Sensory Approach for Diversity in Land Engagement - MDes Thesis

Sensing the City Zine

The Zine was designed to facilitate non-language based communication during the Sensory Mapping Engagements, to make sure that the process is well understood, and participants are aware of their rights and what they are consenting to. The design of the consent and information form became a critical element of the research in this regard.

Continue Reading Sensing the City Zine

Project Process Diagram

Fieldwork - Engagements

The process of Sensory Engagement Design

Sense Layer - Sensory Qualities of Place

Layers of Sensory qualities of place revealed through the analyses of sensory information from the Mapping Walks in Govanhill. Sensory analyses was a creative process that aimed at understanding patterns in sensory information that emerged during the engagements. I structured this information in forms of colour-coded observations and three Sensory Maps - each revealing different layers of sensory information (See on the following maps).

Memory Layer - Intangible Assets

Layers of Memory revealed through the analyses of sensory information from the Mapping Walks in Govanhill. Memory holds the value of intangible and cultural assets that can inform placemaking, allowing for ‘Innovation from Tradition’ (McHattie, 2018).

Imagination Layer - Spatial Imaginaries

Layers of Imagination (Spatial Imaginaries) revealed through the analyses of Sensory Information from the Mapping Walks in Govanhill. These Imaginaries represent place-based knowledge and communicate community visions and preferences for the space to inform spatial representation. In the next phase of the engagement workshops – organised with Milk Cafe in Govanhill - I will bring the above maps back to the same group of participants; for a collaborative sensory analysis. This will form the bases for a Spatial Imagination workshop, where the identified areas of interests – needs and areas of opportunities – and ‘vacancies’ will be merged in a collaborative envisioning of the future of these vacant spaces.

Dynamic patterns of Sensory Information: Sense, Memory and Imagination

Having conducted deep visual and sensory analyses, I came to the understanding that mapping through the senses is a tool that is capable of opening up doors to other types of knowledges. It led me to identify the dynamic patterns between sensory perception, memory and imagination – outlined in the above graph - with their associated placemaking values.

Sensory Engagement Framework

Informed by iterative phases of prototyping, participant engagement, feedback and expert interviews, I developed the Sensory Engagement Framework to provide guidelines for placemakers towards designing accessible and diverse public engagements. I built the design from two main components: The first one focuses on placemaking phases and values (See the Graph above). While the second one, the Access Framework (See the Graph below), compliments the other with the necessary actions and approaches needed to be taken for accessibility.

Access Framework

I designed the Sensory Engagement Framework in a way that it prioritises benefiting participants’ experience over ‘data collection’. Some would regard such an aspect of the approach a ‘weakness’, however I argue in this project’s case, these are overcome by it’s strengths. Such engagements place their emphasis upon understanding local people’s lived experiences and facilitating their access; not only towards public participation, but to often abstract placemaking practices, concepts and methods. Therefore, the Framework’s primary impact lies in its ability to amplify the decisionmaking roles of its participants; empowering those who participate and members of the wider community.

Project Process Journey

The sustainable use of household products in the young transient group.

This project focuses on the sustainable use of household products in the young transient group in Glasgow. Young Transient Group means People are leaving for college and exploring the world post-graduation (Eric Klinenberg, 2012). With the process of globalization, short-term migration has become convenient. In the Migration and Its Impact on Cities published by the World Economic Forum in 2017, it mentioned that adults planning and preparing to migrate are more likely to be young, single, and living in urban areas. As the youngest place in Scotland (David Ottewell, 2018), Glasgow has a large amount of YTG. Under this trend, cities also provide a wide client base for YTG to market their products and services. However, In a current economic model, a household product is manufactured and sold to a customer (Thomas Wastling, 2018). YTG is an excellent customer for enterprises because their movability means their continuous consumption of household products. Such short-term consumption did stimulate the growth of the local economy, but it also caused a massive waste of household products. According to the Scottish Household waste – summary data 2018 from the Scottish Government, Glasgow generated 245,318 tons of household waste in 2018 the whole year, 69% of which were buried. Young people have a great responsibility for it, because they do not have sufficient knowledge about waste segregation in their own area, neither about the waste processing machines (Monika Stępień, 2013). This colossal waste of household products from YTG poses a challenge to the sustainable development of the city. Therefore, this project will focus on researching how to make YTG obtain and process household products more sustainably.

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Mycelium Coffee Capsules

Service Blueprint-01

My Project was judged Highly Commended



Stakeholders Mapping




Interactive Flow Chart

Experiencing Prototyping

Death & grief in the digital age

Initial research findings

based on informal conversations, literature review, and expert interviews

Understanding of what grief is Experience map and mourning practices with and without digital technologies Digital legacy and second-loss anxiety (Basset)


Participants had the possibility to bring an element that they keep in memory of a lost loved one to the interview. These artifacts, wether physical or digital, became a basis for conversation.

Qualitative research

Insights from participant interviews

Four grievers were interviewed about their experience with digital commemorative artifacts.


narrowing down

Research on data storing technologies

Can digital last forever?

What can be done?

Participatory research

Co-designing with grievers

Co-design workshop outcome

Priority map

Feasibility check

Computer science expert interview


very very very very low-fi storyboard prototype

This concept brings digital memories into the physical world

Service map

Draft of a service map

What's next?

Prototyping using 3D printing, Raspberry Pi and programming. Organizing a workshop with the Association Empreintes (Paris, France). Research on the symbolism of objects and research on shapes.

In this wearable, I want to focus on self-expression in this concept. The form took reference from wings, transferring exercise in the output to a flying experience. The idea behind this is to find something people cannot do regardless of arthritis. I want people to feel the extension of their possibilities when interacting with this output. The big device covers the users with the music and lights, combing tactile, visual and auditory sense in a more immersive experience. The main body of the device is made of Tyvek, there are stretching bands on both edges of the wings. This is prototype is realised with Arduino, it's pretty rough, but present effectively! Hope you enjoy it.






Helping people keep away from insomnia

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The final product looks like a clock, this device can remind people to establish good sleep habits.

Dream and emotion steps


01 Cubee

02 Product Body

03 Activities Paper

04 Process

Future Ethical fashion consumption

As we all know, the over-produce and over-consumption in the fashion industry has a huge impact on the living environment.The problem with the current consumer society is that consumer attitudes, values and environmental awareness do not play an important role in determining environmental consumer behavior.Most consumers still prioritize individualism even though they are aware of the serious impact clothing has on society. It is difficult for consumers to build relevant empathy.The recycled behavior can not give them a long-term connection or feedback which is beneficial to them, which leads to a low correlation between attitudes and actual actions.

"How to make consumers change the perception and build empathy for fashion consumption in the nearly future to achieve a long-term sustainability? " This project aims to make more people engaged in the later process of recycling through the design tools and also propose the future vision of the new future ethical fashion consumption mode.

"flee in the quake"

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Being sustainable not for sustainability


HMW & Ideation

User journey map

Logic structure - Tips

Logic structure - Anne

Active Learning for Active Ageing: Brief


User's ecosystem

The diagram presented places mapping by familiarity level or frequency of visiting and type of place. Mostly of sample user would visit neighbour area and public space but rarely visit institutional space except a hospital.

Walking route design framework

9 design criteria for Wandering walk activity


Based on the criteria, The carpet walk is historic and easy to walk from Templeton on Green to Cylde riverwalk and see the carpet in Glasgow Archives at Mitchell Library.

Direct mail

The first touch point of Wandering walk is Wandering Calendar. In the calendar include activity detail, time table (every 2nd and the last Friday's afternoon of every month)

Service Blueprint


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Positive Practices GS


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HOME ON TAP: Strengthening the sense of community belonging through a pub

This project aims to explore the role of a community pub in creating a sense of community belonging and enhancing social well-being to help reverse the shutdown of a community pub. The proposal is a pub service currently to help the non-regular drinkers who are new to a community build the "Public House" mindset through a community pub. It includes assisting non-regular drinkers aware that a community pub could be an entrance to understand the community, feel welcomed by the regulars, and helping the pub landlords attract more non-regulars, even non-drinkers in the future, increasing their business.

Research part

Desk Research about Culture and history of bikes in China

Filed research

Co-design workshop

This is the first time for me to ran a workshop. I invited four participants to discuss the development of bicycles in China and their own views on bicycles. And asked them to draw an unforgettable story about themselves and bicycles.In this process, I defined problems and brainstormed with participants to find solutions.


My final outcome is a cycling cafe, which is a place that workers often go to, so that more workers can know about cycling through this medium. There are many advertisements of cycling activities in the cafe, and people can book their favorite cycling activities and rent bikes. At the end of the activity leave the feedback of the activity. In the future, I hope that through social media to let more people understand and participate in the Bike Cafe. It can be distributed in every corner of the city. Get communities, companies and government cooperation and support. Also I hope to have the opportunity to work with more bike groups and organizations to provide people with more colorful bicycle activities. Finally, improve Bike Cafe together.

Death Avoidance

From early research and interviews, I discovered death is still a taboo topic in many Western societies including the UK. Thinking and talking about dying and death is unlikely unless you've had some experience with it. Most conversations about death happen close to the end of life.

Death as a taboo subject can have substantially negative consequences; unnecessary fear about the process of dying, not receiving preferred treatment and care, and not dying in a preferred place. Families, doctors, and carers often do not have the vocabulary and confidence to talk about it, meaning people are often unaware they are dying in the first place. How can we encourage these conversations to happen earlier to ensure people experience a good death? How can we promote death literacy in the wider society?

Death Literacy

Following further desk research, video interviews, and autoethnography, three key areas for death literacy were identified.

Reflection & conversation: reflecting and discussing end of life wishes and what it means to have a good death.

Knowledge & skills: giving people practical knowledge about supporting themselves and others in having a good death.

Planning & preparation: highlighting the ways and importance of planning for end of life before falling seriously ill.


Roleplay offers a way of building empathy towards the end of life experience. One player would take on the role of the patient while other players would have supportive roles helping the patient through the end of life experience. This would also encourage cooperation rather than competition between players.


To further promote cooperation, the goal is centred around collecting artefacts as a way of winning the game. Each artefact is related to end of life planning to emphasise its importance in real life.


Time advancing symbolises the Patient’s life getting closer to the end. This serves as a reminder that death is inevitable for all of us but that we also have some say on what we want that experience to be like if we take the time to engage with it and plan in advance. That is, for the sake of ourselves and others.


Each card provides a decision or event to advance the story (and game). Content of the cards is related to practical knowledge and resources about end of life to prompt reflection and discussion between the players throughout the game. Humour has also been used to ensure the experience is light and playful, but also informative.


As the prominent death doula Alua Arthur says: ‘Talking about sex won’t make you pregnant, talking about death won’t make you dead’. The Journey could be used as an educational tool in classrooms as part of health education, allowing students to engage and explore relevant resources and knowledge about death with their peers and/or families at home.

My Project Proposal Journal

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Where they are now?

What are they facing?


User analysis

User Journey Map

Developing the concept

The outcome


Chinese Street Vendor Economy

Chinese street vendor economy

During the period of COVID-19, the Chinese government proposed that street vendors economy can solve the unemployment problem economically. What is the life of street vendors after the introduction of the policy?

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Redefining and rethinking the furniture' s meaning to people.

Second-hand furniture co-design system

Personal privacy protection on social media

Explore the gap between privacy attitudes and privacy behaviors

We are continually experiencing social network privacy leaks. In this case, users should pay attention to their privacy and avoid disclosing their personal information on the Internet. But they did not do so. This is called the "privacy paradox." These are all self-perception biases that lead to these dangerous behaviors. This is also the root cause of the user's privacy attitude in the "privacy paradox" phenomenon because users did not realize that this behavior has potential risks and wrong privacy protection methods. Internet police studio is a leisure and entertainment space that combines online platforms and offline cafes. It aims to help the public raise awareness of privacy protection and understand the value of personal privacy. The studio's official account provides content sharing about privacy experience, real cases, protection methods, and online service consultation with the Internet police. At the same time, the cafe is the offline platform of the internet police studio. Users can get a cup of coffee by sharing their experiences, and they can also communicate with the online police and other users one-on-one offline. In the future, users can also participate in offline workshops, online privacy lectures, or experience some privacy risk mini-games.

What is this?

Be a man Kit

The kit is conformed by: The be a man handbook, a model of male and female sexual organs that help the user to know more about the parts that conform them, and are going to be used to do exercise like how to put a condom; lubricant and “the safe man pocket pack” that is a small wallet with condoms to encourage protection.

Be a man kit

The handbook will be developed with the help of sexologist, phycologist and based on men experience about the taboos and stigmas, and how can we break with this model to stop toxic behaviour that can be translated in violence. The handbook will have, exercises of self-awareness and communication, test to evaluate your behaviours and knowledge and information about pleasure.

Process map

A description of all the process for this project.

Service Design Blue print

Future of the project

The future impact for this project will be developed another platform for women with the same core idea, change the mindset about what is to be a woman. And ones this to the platform had enough reaction will be transformed in source for human behaviours that will have information for both genders.

Web Journey

This diagram explains all the features of the platform and what is the information you can find.

Stakeholders map

This is a general view of all the stakeholders involved in this project, from the expert's stakeholders area, I had the chance to interview Alicia Delicia (sexologist and adult film actress), Claudia de la Garza, Eréndira Derbez (writers of the book No son micro: Machismos cotidianos), Mia Davis (CEO of Talk Tabu), Paula Manners (Rosey Project) and Robert Jensen (Teacher, writer and participant as an expert in the Netflix documentary: Liberated, the new sexual revolution) and more.


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1st cover

2nd project details

The page shows the background, main challenge, insights selected and the design concept of this research project.

3rd blueprint

The blueprint shows how the workshop arranged.

Toolkit design-1:2

The page illustrates how to use the toolkit with details information.

Toolkit design-2:2

The page shows the details of the toolkit.

Adjust Imbalanced Position Between Couriers and Platforms

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Final project Cecilia Zanardini

The sustainable issue in the garment sector: how reduce consumption and the amount of cast-off clothing acting on buyers and companies.

Key concept used for the development : Emotional durability

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The social history code

About the Project

In the UK, more than 350,000 people are registered homeless. Looking at the definition of Homelessness, there are other types of homelessness that this number does not represent. According to sources, the data will be doubled if hidden homeless people were to be included in this count. My project is about understanding the challenges that people face while experiencing Hidden Homelessness and how can we provide adequate support so that they do not end up sleeping rough on streets.

Glimpse of the Research

The research was conducted using multiple mediums to facilitate the conversation and gather insights into the current situation around homelessness. Digital Ethnography, Interviews, Workshops and Journey Mapping exercises were some methods brought into play during the research process. The diverse stakeholder group represented policymaking, frontline workers and personal experience to have a holistic perspective about the challenge.

How Might We statements

After the research and synthesis, there were two questions that became the northstar for the project and directed it


The first idea was to create a hand-holding platform that navigates the person out of their homelessness through continuous guidance at each step and provide all the relevant information about essential support organizations (food, showers, storage etc.) on the user-friendly platform. The second concept was of a card game that will become a conversation starter in workplaces as anyone can be hidden homeless and an empathetic workplace is one less thing to worry about for the person experiencing homelessness.

User Testing

User feedback was key in shaping the project. Testing was conducted with multiple stakeholders at different stages to learn about user preferences and ease of use. It was done through in-person testing and online tests depending on their availability and technology access. The feedback from these activities was very insightful and helpful in further iterations for the project.

As every case of homelessness will bring different set of platform requirement, this platform is currently imagined for people very similar to the profile of Fiona and Adam.

Adam's Journey

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Journey to my Home! is a bridge between all those ‘access points’ and the 'support system' for homelessness. It is made available at the all the places accessed by people experiencing homelessness to have a maximum reach of this information.

How it works?

'Journey to my Home!' is a digital platform that acts as a personal mentor for anyone experiencing homelessness. It is a custom navigator for the user and designs the most appropriate journey for their homelessness after processing answers of some initial questions about personal nature, disability, employment experience and current housing situation.

After processing the answers and understanding the person's circumstances, it breaks down their journey in few steps. For every step (that could be an interaction with a local authority), it provides documents checklist, usual questions and other important information about their contact details, working hours and emergency numbers. The user is asked to record their response for the platform to know any help that might be received by them and what could be the next steps. Learning about the user's experience (with the authority) helps the platform decide their relevance in future journeys and their speciality. With all the essential support (for food, showers, storage etc.) mentioned on the page, it enables the person to quickly access other services that are needed but would not be part of their journey.

Future of the Platform

In the future, this platform will play an integral role in cross-organization communication. It will become an ecosystem that holds trainings and awareness about topics like homelessness and work on behaviour change towards sensitive topics. It will be a secure document repository for homeless people and piloted in other parts of the country.




the recipe

social media activities



neighborhood "barrier"

I applied the neighbourhood“barrier” idea and design the information for front glass window in Cafetagoo. In this way, the guests passing by can accept the information, besides this is a promotion to the shop




community resilience

Video: Linkers Talk to me

Linkers -Talk to me: An Invisible relationship sign for tourists in Japan to use. This is an invisible volunteer system. Everyone can become part of it, change your role as a volunteer or tourist. People who arrived in Japan will receive a signed badge. If you want to know the local culture or get help from local people, you could put the “talk to me” badge on your clothes/bags. The local volunteer who has “ask me” badge may see this. It’s a signal to visualize ‘communication’.

Glasgow You're The One For Me

Tesla Driving Change

Committee on Climate Change

Glasgow, November 2021

Mapping Out The City

Discovering Opportunity

Why we should care

If a museum is closed, it will cause less or harder access to collections & heritage to public, less educational opportunities for local communities, mass unemployment of relevant staff and others within museum ecosystem and damage to local tourism & economic development.

Insight 1 - The impacts during lockdown period

During lockdown period, museums had no income. They took the Job Retention Scheme provided by government to get financial support.

Insight 2 - Different impacts between independent museums and governmental museums

Independent museums are impacted more in the short term because they rely on visitors revenues too much. On the contrary, government museums are impacted in the long term due to the cutbacks of funding provided by government which will be transferred to key sectors.

Insight 3 - Challenges during post-crisis period

After reopening, the cost increases, but the visits number remains low. Due to the social distancing policy, it’s hard to hold family activities, accept school tours and rent out their spaces.

Insight 4 - Challenges for digital engagement

For local traditional audiences, they don't have the ability and the technology to access the digital contents produced by museums. For some small museums or the museums in the developing area, it is hard for them to produce the contents due to the limitation of resources, talents and devices.

The structure of my solution

My solution would be an association including small and independent museums. This association collaborates with producing theatre to produce short plays based on the collections and the setting of the museums. The plays not only can be viewed in the physical sites but also can be viewed through online channel. Besides this short experience, all the museums members would provide long and immersive online visiting experience.


This storyboard told a story about a whole journey of a museum lover, Risa, to describe how visitors engage with all the systems I designed.

Dwelling for flood after sea level rise

Recycling service

Collection van

Online recycling service

Online-to-offline recycling service

Food Systems 2.0

Food Systems 2.0 joins the movement to build an alternative food supply for Glasgow.

Hello I'm Yurie

Food Systems 2.0 Govan Organic Eats

Logo for Social Enterprise


How to Work Remotely

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Generative Knitting Motif Software

This software aimed to challenge the origin of knitting motifs routed in family and place by providing an obvious contradiction to traditional methods.

Interactive Fair Isle Swatches

These interactive Fair Isle swatches were part of a digital knitting experiences and embodied insights from the research participants in Shetland. This was part of a display that enabled me to engage with participants and playfully share research insights.

Image of Local Knitters found in the Tangwick Haa Museum, Shetland.

Fair Isle knitting is a highly skilful and specialised craft which was traditionally practiced by women on Shetland. The technique with three needles and a knitting belt allows knitters to 'knit on the go' and to quickly drop the needles to do other forms of work in between.


The three provotypes consisted from left to right of interactive Fair Isle swatches which were based on traditional motifs, a generative motif software which allowed to alter and manipulate the traditional designs, and a set of digital knitting needles which assisted in navigating the new pattern by counting the row and stitches.


Relational Map Outcome


Participatory Workshop Plan