Socially committed an politically critical design

In a world where we are confronted with endless social problems, big and small, there is a need for a critically engaged vision of citizens, politicians and designers. In the course of the current millennium, a new way has arisen to use design as a tool to change. Rather than designing and marketing the next piece of consumer goods, design thinking with a socially responsible attitude ensures that today’s designers contribute to the problems and challenges of tomorrow. Seven socially engaged designers about their practice, developments and future vision.

Sara Rombouts

Sarah Rombouts graduated as a product designer, from the LUCA School of Arts C-Mine, in 2016. Her masters project formed the basis for Studio Refuge, where she designs products, together with refugees. Studio Refugee aims, on the one hand, to give the…

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Hanne De Wyngaert

Hanne De Wyngaert is a fashion designer (Antwerp Academy) and became known for the Ti+Hann label, of which she is a partner. For her Fair Trade design label Que Onda Vos, she spent nine months a year in Guatemala, where weaving is a…

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Nik Baerten

Nik Baerten is a designer at Pantopicon, and in 2013, he worked on Mobilotoop, an on-top project by Flanders In Shape and Design Platform Vlaanderen. Mobilotoop was a policy design project, aimed at thinking about mobility in Flanders in 2040, by way of…

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Arnaud Raskin

Arnaud Raskin is a social entrepreneur, who studied product design at the former ‘Stedelijke Hogeschool voor Industriële Vormgeving en Audiovisuele Kunsten’ in Genk. During a lecture on street children, he decided to dedicate his masters thesis to a project especially for them. Mobile…

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Pablo Calderón Salazar

Pablo Calderón Salazar studied product design in Bogotá and social design in Eindhoven. At the moment, he’s working on a doctorate at LUCA School of Arts C-Mine, on participatory plans with public space. In his social design practice, he’s inspired by alternatives…

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Ann Bessemans

Ann Bessemans is a graphic designer and typographer. For her doctorate, she developed the Matilda font, adapted to the needs of visually-impaired children. Matilda is a font which helps visually-impaired children who are just starting to read. Whereas most modern serif fonts have…

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Jan Boelen

Jan Boelen is trained as a product designer. He is currently Artistic Director of Z33, and head of the Social Design masters programme at the Design Academy Eindhoven (NL). Z33 aims, as an arts centre, to be involved with social change, and sees…

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