• ds21 is an AHRB/ EPSRC funded research project that ran from January to December 2005

See some of their Draft Tools for Synergy/Metadesign

Professor Karen Blincoe

As an educator in sustainability, Karen has done pioneering work in developing the field. At present she is Director of ICIS and a lecturer in a number of Universities. Her long standing and high level involvement to the Danish Design Council and to other international bodies include the Board of Icograda (external link). She was professor at the Faculty of Design & Architecture at Brighton University and head of the Institute for Visual Communication at the Danmarks Designskole. In order to find a new role for design in 1989 she established the environmental design company o2 UK, and – in 1991 - the International Centre for Creativity, Innovation and Sustainability (external link). ICIS was awarded the Danish Design Vision Prize in 2002.
See her paper Is Metadesign the Solution?

Andrew Carmichael

Andrew is currently chair of the Creative Lewisham Agency (external link). Trained as an artist, he founded the Art in Perpetuity Trust. It enabled artists to establish a more secure legal and financial base for sustaining their studio communities. Carmichael was head hunted by the then Mayor of Lewisham to launch the Creative Lewisham Agency. The pioneering initiative made Lewisham pre-eminent in linking creative enterprise with community involvement, industrial enterprise, and urban regeneration. His approach has led to Lewisham/Deptford being recognised as a location for one of the first “creative hubs”, an initiative of the London development agency and selected as an area to undertake a city growth strategy project, as led by Professor Michael Porters’s I.C.I.C. organisation.

Dr. Caroline Davey

Caroline is Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Design and Innovation Group, University of Salford (external link). A qualified organisational psychologist, she has led major UK and European funded projects to promote equality, financial inclusion, crime prevention, partnering, lifelong learning and competitiveness amongst SMEs. Other roles include project evaluator for work on community finance and action learning. She is also involved with VivaCity2020 – a 5-year research project developed by the Sustainable Urban Environments consortium. This will deliver practical tools and resources to support sustainable and socially responsible urban design decision-making. See her paper From Sustainability to Socially Responsible Design

Richard Douthwaite

Richard is based in Westport, Ireland. He has been described as one of the world’s foremost ecological journalists. He is a specialist in micro-currencies and how they can be designed to meet the local needs of a particular culture. After developing a practical framework to support local fishing co-operatives, Richard spent two years as Government Economist in the British colony of Monserrat. Richard is an expert on the social and environmental implications of currency systems. His books include The Ecology of Money (external link), The Growth Illusion (external link): How Economics Growth has Enriched the Few, Impoverished the Many and Endangered the Planet”, (Green Books, 1999) and Short Circuit (external link), (Green Books, 1996), and Before the Wells Run Dry (external link). In 1998-9 he was a consultant to an EU-funded project to establish experimental community currencies in Scotland, Ireland, Amsterdam and Madrid.
See his paper Increasing Global Synergy by Re- Designing the Economic System.

Bill Dunster

Bill is renowned for the design of BEDZED (external link) – a social housing estate in Beddington, Surrey. BEDZED applies a ‘zero(fossil)energy’ concept for making sustainable living styles more feasible. Remarkably, none of BEDZED’s individual elements are, in themselves especially original. Indeed, this pioneering project could – in theory – have been accomplished at any time in the last three or four decades. A runner-up for the coveted 2004 Stirling Prize, BEDZED represents a constellation of complementary solutions at different levels; technical, financial, aesthetic, political, and social.

Professor Naomi Gornick

Naomi pioneered the first Design Management MA at the Royal College of Art. She later developed similar principles at De Montfort University, Brunel University, and – currently – at Dundee University (external link). She also lectures at design colleges in New York, North Carolina, Barcelona and Copenhagen. Professor Gornick worked closely with industry to ensure that designers were prepared for a more central, strategic role in the way that design is conducted.
See her paper Education for Metadesign

Hannah Jones

Hannah is an artist whose research into ‘awkward spaces’ has led her to collaborate with architects in making direct interventions within the urban landscape. The notion of ‘awkward space’ invites an aesthetic inquiry into the uneven quality of ‘flow’ that visitors experience when travelling through the built environment. Where most orthodox descriptions may imply that – for example - pedestrian turbulence is disagreeable or undesirable, her methods of managing ‘untidy’ unplanned spaces are able to elicit intangible qualities and ad hoc processes in a way that would be difficult using rational planning methods.
See her paper Awkward Space and her notes on Implicate Designing and Metadesign

Prof. Phil Jones

Phil is Head of School and Director of Architectural Science at the Welsh School of Architecture (external link). He is internationally prolific as a building scientist and has worked on the design and assessment of a large number of sustainable buildings of all sizes and descriptions. His practical engineering expertise and experience has also informed his work at a theoretical level. In this regard he has published over a hundred papers and reports, many of which offer strategic solutions to social inertia in adopting readily available alternatives to a wasteful living style. See his paper BuildingEnvironments

Prof. Milan Jaros

Milan is a mathematician and theoretical physicist who is probably best known for his contributions to nano-technology. His deep interest in the philosophy of science and the epistemological legacy of classical science has guided his work as Director of the Centre for Research in Knowledge, Science and Society (external link). He is especially interested in how knowledge acquisition is affected by the way we gather and process information. He concludes that skills of good citizenship require critical orientation skills in order to enable the acquisition of evidence and the formulation of opinion. worked on issues concerning complex systems in communication and intelligent processing out of which evergend the relevance of the notion of quasi-object which has important design/social implications (e.g. for having to treat the collective/social as a complex (as opposed to a ‘complicated’ system).
See his paper Space Warps and the Narratable Self in the Post- Mechanical Age

Dr. Vadim I. Kvitash, M.D., Ph.D., FAAAAI, FACAAI

Vadim is a Clinical Faculty Member at the School of Medicine, University of California at San Francisco (external link) (USA). He has developed the Complete Scientific Theory of Control, Regulation and Coordination in Complex and Super-Complex Systems (RELONICS) and Technologies (BALASCOPY). His diagnostic methods use 2nd Order cybernetic principles. By establishing parameters for global (i.e. ‘universal’) relationships within a given system, normative values (‘relons’) are established and used as a reference. From this basis, ‘reloms’ (i.e. distinct exemplars of abnormality) can be identified from look-up tables. On occasion, these tools have enabled medical practitioners to detect certain conditions even before normal symptoms show themselves. This is because they record the patient’s condition by mapping not only the discrete symptoms, but also the relations among them, as described above. See his paper on Relonics Properties of Living Systems written in collaboration with Boris Gorbis.

Professor Otto van Nieuwenhuijze

Otto qualified as a civil engineer, doctor of medicine, and healer. He lectures in London, Switzerland, and Paris, and has published well over a hundred papers on the science and mathematics of healing and embodied knowledge. Currently, he is editor of the Journal of Integrated Health Care in Amsterdam. In utilising his knowledge of engineering and medicine, he has developed theories and methods that utilise 2nd Order cybernetic principles, and which identify useful comparisons with the way the living body works, and how towns and cities might be conceived and (self)designed in the future. See his collaboration (with John Wood) on the paper Sympoiesis and Synergy

Jan- Marc Petroshka

Jan- Marc was trained in architecture and town planning in Berlin and Rome. He has practiced in Genoa, Berlin, Rome and London. His main interest lies in researching and re-defining concepts of (co-) habitation. He is currently working with MacDonald Egan (external link) a London-based property developer elaborating a novel concept of live-work spaces within an integrated business community in South London.
See his paper A Synergistic Urban Community

Ann Schlachter (Project Administrator)

Ann is a positive thinker and keen 'recyclist'. She is Home Office trained and was personal secretary to the Rt. Hon. Mark Carlisle, MP. She was an administrator in the Medical Centre and the Design Department of Goldsmiths College, London University (external link), where she supported, and was Administrator/Asst Project Manager for many research projects and professional organisations, both within, and outside the College. Ann maintains a practical involvement with a dazzling range of sports, cooking styles, and music. Her interests and enterprises include jazz singing, managing a rock band and a youth orchestra, and running an American comic bookshop. She has also worked with the novellist Alan Sillitoe in transcribing several of his novels.

John Wood (Principal Investigator)

John is Professor in Design at Goldsmiths College, London University (external link) and visiting Professor of Lifestyle Design at Nagoya University of Arts (external link), Japan. From 1978 and 1988 he was Deputy Head of the Fine Art Department at Goldsmiths, after which he conceived and launched several degrees that embody an ethical, relational, and entrepreneurial approach to design. His work with self-mapping systems uses optimal 3D configurations and other topologies designed to enhance self-reflexive synergies within a given context.
See John's paper on Synergy in Urban Planning and his collaborative paper with Otto, entitled 'Sympoiesis and Synergy'.

Professor Martin Woolley

Martin is Director of Research at Central St. Martins School of Art (external link), University of the Arts, London. He was one of the first design academics in the UK to explore the economic importance of design innovation and environmental sustainability in design. Whilst he chaired the demi (external link) project that developed a database of environmentalist data for designers. Woolley will play a significant role as the Cluster’s link with the design community in the UK and far beyond. He currently chairs, or plays a senior role with many academic and professional bodies. These include DEED, (Design Education Association), The Design Research Society and the UK Design Council.
See his paper Synergy in Design Research

Each of the above researchers offers at least one of the following:

  • a clear altruistic vision of desirable and sustainable living style/s
  • knowledge of relevant design theories and/or practices
  • knowledge of relevant practical science and/or engineering field
  • knowledge of relevant arts and/or humanities field
  • techniques that foster a shared sense of wholeness and well being
  • techniques that help to sustain a self-reflexive system of communication within a group
  • techniques that help to sustain discursive values within a group
  • techniques that help to sustain transactional values in a group
  • techniques that support the holistic and self-reflexive management of data and knowledge
  • a high level conduit to the design profession
  • a high level conduit to the design industry
  • a high level conduit to other relevant external agencies

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