Design Educators Conference 2012 Seeks Proposals
Geographics: Design, Education, and the Transnational Terrain
December 13–15, 2012
Paper proposals due February 15, 2012
All conference proposals will be evaluated via a peer-review process.
Visit the conference site for all proposal submission guidelines and downloadable forms.
For many design educators working in different parts of the world today, design practice is taking place in what may be called a transnational context. The boundaries that define the field of higher education have become increasingly fluid, and professors, students, programs, and curricula are moving back and forth between distant regions of the world as never before. The design projects, research, and institutions that result retain a unique cultural complexity because they promote meanings and values that often transcend the cultures and boundaries of the nations within which they originate.
Geographics will provide international design educators an opportunity to share examples of design projects and programs that have been implemented within a transnational context, while allowing others to present theoretical or reflective positions about what it means to design within a transnational context today. The conference will also be open to presentations from practitioners who design within transnational contexts and who view design as a strategic framework for intercultural collaboration and intersection. The conference will use the term “transnational” to describe the ways in which designs moves through a wide range of contemporary and historical geographic contexts, including the movement of design between multiple nations and other geopolitical entities; between peoples who define themselves as belonging to different geopolitical entities, regardless of their location or national affiliation; and against the constraints of any particular national, international, or global geographic construct.
Conference Format and Structure
The conference will consist of three thematic strands which will allow conference participants to address the ways in which design projects, design ideas, and design institutions move within transnational contexts. Two renowned design thinkers will launch each conference strand by presenting their ideas about the ways in which transnational design operates today. These opening sessions will then be followed by consecutive paper sessions, which will continue throughout the second and third days of the conference.
Theme 1: Design Projects will allow design educators to present examples of transnational project work in its many forms. This strand can include projects that have been created through direct collaboration between people living in different regions; projects that have ended up transcending national boundaries, regardless of their makers’ original intentions; projects created by a designer living in one country or cultural region for people living in another; projects that have facilitated communication between peoples of many different regions; and the discussion of international and transnational projects throughout history.
Theme 2: Design Ideas will allow design educators to present theoretical or critical positions that discuss the ways in which design ideas move across borders, either historically or within contemporary global contexts.
Theme 3: Design Institutions will allow design educators and administrators to exemplify or criticize the ways in which a wide variety of design institutions have served or are serving as transnational educational enterprises. Presentations within this strand can include the representation of specific programs, schools, and organizations as well as the discussion of the ways in which such institutions operate.