Public Space and Design for Everyday Lives of CitizensCity is an inevitable space of life for the modern people. The skyline that we are currently experiencing, the plaza, parks, natural environments and so forth are mostly the result of the city plan that was systemized in the past, and until now, the urban space was planned to play its role in line with the usage that was planned and defined based on function. Various parts of cities that achieved industrial competitiveness by prioritizing efficiency and economics is far from ‘user-centric approaches’ and achieving ‘sustainability’ that is the focus of today’s society. Future city should be restructured into a space that can enable exchange and circulation based on the needs and the thoughts of citizens or stakeholders of local communities, and aged spaces and the environment should be improved to resolve urban issues.
Design for Public Service Platform1. Digital platform of public service Public service based on digital platform is emerging as the most important factor in the competitiveness of a nation and a city. In 2020, Korea ranked 8th in the World Digital Competitiveness Ranking announced by the Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Switzerland, which was a 2-step rise from 10th position in 2019, to show its potential in the digital field. Also, in the government index announced by OECD, Korea is exhibiting strength and performance in digital-based public service by achieving 1st place in digital by design government, 2nd place in government as a platform, 3rd place in data-driven government, 1st place in open by default government, 4th place in user driven government and 12th place in proactiveness of government. Seoul is also making efforts to drive innovation in public service based on excellent digital infrastructure, and moreover, there is a demand to resolve problems in a way that can be felt by our citizens and achieve transformation in terms of creating sustainable and real values.
Public Design GovernanceLast month, a “Consultative Group of Residents for Publilc Design” was established by Seongdong-gu District Office. It was the nation’s first consultative body in design that engaged residents and consisted of eight residents, four expert members, two design experts and one public officer. Through the consultative group, the district was able to quickly collect residents’ opinions about relevant projects including the one related to public design and combined experts’ advice thereby setting a direction for design. It was designed to become a channel to communicate with the residents. In today’s multifaceted and complex modern society, existing design process that produces an outcome by utilizing intuitive ideas of only few designers has often turned out to be insufficient to meet the needs of the citizens. In response, this has shed a light on the need to come up with an innovative method to engage citizens, cooperate with stakeholders and experts for higher level of self-reliance and sustainability. The word “public” in public design means an unspecified number of the general public and together, which incorporates a value of engaging various players and cooperating in the process to create a design intended for everyone. The strategy that is being used to realize the afore-mentioned value of public design is a governance taking a perspective of “various methods for problem-solving.”
Public design for people, cooperative public designDesign has always evolved as a meaningful means to achieve an objective or a part that is required in the society. Currently, active efforts are being made to resolve the issues of economy, environment and safety through design. In the recent times where we are transcending the era of industrialization to usher in the era of sustainability, design that improves the competitive industrial products is beginning to contribute to our society as design that improves public values as a part of the strategy to resolve problems from the perspective that design is changing in line with the demand of the society. ‘Public design’ is playing a leading role at the center, and from now on, 'design' will resolve a considerable number of issues that our society will face, and it will be making various contributions as a cultural pillar of life.
ESG and Social problem-solving design; with a focus on design governance projectSince the spread of COVID-19, cities have faced various social problems different from the pre-COVID era, and citizens have experienced fatigue and stress arising from social problems including Corona Blue (depression due to self-isolation and social distancing), social isolation, increased hatred, digital addiction, etc. To effectively respond to social problems of the city that take place in a multifaceted manner, it is critical to clearly define subproblems first.
Policy direction identified from the analysis of the diffusion process of Life Safety (Crime Prevention) DesignThe anonymous cities that we have been building allowed us to have maximum freedom and make various choices, however, inappropriately, the cities have mercilessly reduced many alternative choices such as collective community action that were available in the past. Only for the limited purpose of reviving the collective environment, physical design of living environment must be used.
Health of the residents and city shelter in the post pandemic eraThe pandemic that dramatically changed the daily lives and the work environment across the globe is going through a recovery phase in all metrics. Experts have predicted that the humanity will have daily lives that is different from the period prior to the spread of Covid-19 based on the New Normal (Standard that is newly emerging with the change in the era) phenomenon that resulted from the prolonged spread of the infectious disease, and as such, many cities and citizens started to face a new life.
Good Environments Make the Youth Emotionally Healthy“Social problem-solving design” that changed our everyday life — youth problem-solving design The social problem-solving design project of the SMG that began since 2011 has undergone a transition from a “policy-centered” design to a “human-centered” design by proving its effects and receiving the attention of residents. Accordingly, the SMG started the design project in 2014 to solve problems faced by the youth, such as school violence, emotional anxiety, digital dependency, and peer relationships. The first step was the school violence prevention design project which sought points for improvement by analyzing various causes of school violence. The project name was changed to youth problem-solving design in 2018 as its scope has been expanded from school violence to other youth problems that are regarded as social issues. In particular, the necessity of the project emerges from the fact that problematic behaviors of the youth are worsening in terms of the quality and diversifying in terms of the types and targets. There is an urgent need for a solution that considers the developmental stage of the youth and regional characteristics. The youth problem-solving design project of the SMG will be examined by focusing on six representative cases of youth problems.
Does the Crime Rate Drop By Changing Designs?“Social problem-solving design” that changed our everyday life — life safety design The SMG implemented a design policy in 2007 and carried out city-centered policies for landscape improvement to reinforce the city brand. As a result, Seoul won the Grand Prize at the Index Awards, renowned for “Design to Improve Life,” in 2011. While looking for ways to use the prize money that came with the award, the SMG thought of socially disadvantaged citizens who could not benefit from the design policy. The SMG took a new step forward with the “social problem-solving design” project, which aims to reduce the grievances of people who cannot benefit from policies due to various reasons like having a busy livelihood. Having launched its first life safety design project in 2012, the SMG strengthened the roles of design in solving various social issues. Instead of policies and macroscopic systems, the concept of design has been expanded to public design to solve problems of varying sizes that influence the lives of people. The social problem-solving design projects of the SMG are divided into categories such as life safety design, cognitive health design, stress-free design, youth problem-solving design, and design governance. Each project utilizes the “service design” methodology, which derives relationship-centered solutions based on communication and awareness improvement beyond the improvement of the physical environment regarding social issues. This year, the social problem-solving design projects of the SMG marks its 10th anniversary. In celebration, we intend to take a close look at our surrounding environment and public design that have undergone small and large changes.
Respond to the crisis, “Coronavirus reminder’ – from observation to action (Designing Safety Content That You Want to Keep It on Your Desk)Corona Alert started at the end of January, not long after the outbreak of COVID 19, with the idea of creating a service that can give a little help to society with the programming skills we learned. The members who developed 'Corona Alert' all gathered through the same programming conference. The team members who studied coding together at the conference and had experience in actually developing various services were working as developers of startups. I saw a lot of advertisements saying that such sites exist. We first analyzed several services already on the market. If it is similar to the previously released services, there is no significant meaning, so we considered the inconveniences and the direction of improvement for the existing services. In addition, we established the core value of the service by determining on what points we differentiate, and what value we can provide to users, beyond simply removing inconveniences.
Designing Safety Content That You Want to Keep It on Your DeskIt is no coincidence that when some major safety incident occurs is when most people take an interest in safety. When an individual pays particular attention to safety in daily life, it is because some accident or incident has motivated them to do so. While the type of content that can be easily accessed through smartphones is becoming more diverse and complete, it makes us wonder if the safety of our society is changing. It makes us wonder if safety measures are competitive. The Safety Design Research Institute ‘Osafe’ started from this question. “How can we keep people safe?” “Isn’t it possible to prevent unexpected safety accidents in advance? “ “If there is an unavoidable safety accident, what can be done to minimize the damage?” Osafe works based on a design methodology. In order to be chosen by modern people who live busy lives, we are working hard to produce and share safety content that can stand out, have fun, and form a consensus.
Social Problem Solving Design, Reinforcement of Resiliency Capacity Through DesignThe COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis that no one has ever experienced. Existing social problems, such as economic recession, relative poverty, increased depression due to social isolation, and the intensification of suffering experienced by vulnerable groups such as infants, young children, the elderly, and the disabled, are being exacerbated by the pandemic. Medical staff and other members of society in various fields are making every effort to identify and deal with unpredictable situations in their respective positions, and the Seoul Metropolitan Government is also currently doing its best to overcome the Corona situation. We are now living in an era where problem-solving strategies are needed more than ever. There is an urgent need for a paradigm shift in policy to prevent and improve social problems that incur huge social costs, rather than reactive measures. Design is one of the main solutions to improve this, and it is a core competency and process that is already being used by many organizations and companies pursuing innovation as well as the public as a tool for solving problems. Through the social problem-solving design policy, the Seoul Metropolitan Government breaks away from the microscopic view of physical improvement and applies design to the overall municipal administration, designing a plan and process for problem-solving, and jointly solving it with various stakeholders. ‘Social resilience’ can be said to be the interaction between the vulnerability of a city and its resilience capacity. The vulnerability of a city is affected by many social problems inherent in the city, and the city's recovery capacity means the city's resources and systems that can overcome and solve these problems. Seoul Design wants to work together to increase the resilience of society so that our daily lives, which have been changed by non-contact, isolation, and social distancing, can be more closely connected.
The Process and Outcomes of the COVID-19 Design ChallengeInsights and Applications for the Post-Corona Era; The start of a design challenge related to COVID-19 Design has great power. Design has the power to motivate people to do many things, such as taking action, creating products and services that make life simple and rich, and deriving a whole new experience. Designers basically carry out design work assigned to their organizations, but in addition to these daily tasks, they have the power to solve the world's biggest problems. I expressed these ideas in the keynote speech last August at the Design for America Summit, where I urged designers to solve the biggest challenges facing the international community through a bold approach. And it wasn't long before the COVID-19 virus outbreak, which had effects worldwide. I thought that there must be a solution that designers can bring to meet the huge challenge of the Corona crisis. After discussing how we should contribute to this challenge by making a difference together with like-minded people like World Design Organization’s Srini Srinivasan and Rebecca Breuer and Liz Gerber of Design for America, we decided to launch the COVID-19 Design Challenge and bring the designer community together. Our starting point was to reach out to designers in each community and ask them what challenges they might face with COVID-19. Altogether, there were over 180 challenges, and they were recorded on Post-it notes and categorized according to themes. We grouped the related ones together and marked them on the priority grid in order of high impact and urgency, considering whether it is a task we need to address, what impact it will have, and whether it can affect urgency and resolution.
Considerations regarding healthy city after COVID-191. Statistical figures on the status of coronavirus outbreaks by city in Korea Since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in South Korea on January 20, 2020, the coronavirus has spread rapidly in Korea, peaking on February 29, 2020. Since then, there has been a rapid re-spreading trend twice up to October, and the capital city, Seoul, has 53.13 confirmed cases per 100,000 population, the third highest number after Daegu and Gyeonggi-do.
The Change of Daily Life, Social Problem Solving Design in SeoulParadigm change in public design and the emergence of social problem-solving design Seoul is the political, economic, social and cultural center of Korea. Korea industrialized in a short period of time due to a period of rapid economic growth that is sometimes called the ‘miracle on the Han River’. Although the brand value of Seoul might have risen, has the quality of life of citizens improved along with it?
Solving Diverse Common Social Problems of Seoul through DesignSeoul is an old city where people first began living 6,000 years ago. During the Joseon Dynasty, the capital was enclosed by four gates, but under Japanese rule, the Japanese government established the Governor-General for 36 years of colonial rule. Afterwards, during the Korean War, Seoul was bombed and the city was turned to ashes. Despite all these difficulties, Seoul joined the OECD in 1996 through rapid economic growth that is called the miracle of the Han River, and in 1988 Seoul introduced itself to the world by hosting the Olympics. Such economic development brought benefits, but on the other hand, it brought the negative problems that go with large cities such as environmental pollution, overcrowding, traffic problems, and social problems. In terms of design, signboards that cause visual pollution in the city center, unplanned skylines, and environments covered with obstacles remain yet another challenge for Seoul to solve.
Universal design of Yokohama City Current events in designThe evolution of universal design in Japan Yokohama City is an area with a population of 3.77 million. Its area is about three quarters of Seoul, and it is divided into 18 wards. It started with a population of 500 150 years ago, and after the port was established, the population increased. However, the rapid population increase between 1960 and 1970 caused problems in urban development. Yokohama is currently a city with a significant aging population. Although this is a problem for Japan as a whole, based on the analyzed data, the population growth trend of Yokohama City is expected to peak in 2019. After that, the proportion of the elderly population is expected to continue to increase, and it is expected that one-third of the total population will be elderly by 2030. Looking at the map showing the aging population, it is like looking at the history of how Yokohama's housing development has taken place. The beginning of universal design in Japan was triggered by the Tokyo Olympics 50 years ago. The Tokyo Olympics, held in 1964, introduced the use of pictograms to solve the problem of communicating with foreigners. In 1965, Braille blocks were introduced, and actual installation began in 1967. In 1969, awareness of the need to make the city accessible to wheelchairs increased. Braille blocks were first introduced in the provincial cities to the western part of japan, which is also the case with barrier-free access in Japan, which started in provincial cities rather than the capital.