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.
Design Seoul 2.0 Design Policy and Future StrategiesWhat projects does the Seoul Metropolitan Government pursue to create a ‘fun and vibrant city of Seoul’? The Seoul Metropolitan Government is actively pursuing the 「Design Seoul 2.0 Project」 in its endeavor to establish ‘Seoul as a fun and vibrant city’. This comprehensive plan focused on propelling Seoul into a top 5 global city characterized by an abundance of vitality and charm. The objective is to create a city that is cherished by global citizens, a city where the creativity of its citizens is fully realized, and a city that adheres to global standards while preserving Seoul’s unique identity. To achieve this vision, ‘Active Seoul’ is based on five principles which are empathetic, inclusive, contribution, resilient, and sustainable design. The following is an overview of project initiatives. ① Empathetic design that feels pride and pleasure in the uniqueness of Seoul. ② Inclusive design for everyone. ③ Contribution design created by citizens and businesses together. ④Resilient design responsible for the safety and health of citizens. ⑤ Sustainable design that saves the environment and economy. Further details of the project will be outlined based on these five principles.
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.”
Accessibility Information Map for the Mobility Disadvantaged PersonsCities comprise artificial or non-artificial combinations of countless roads (lines), facilities (points), and spaces (planes). Living in such cities, we find the most efficient and fastest way to reach a facility or space. When driving a car, we use a navigation device that informs us of the optimal or shortest route considering real-time traffic volume information and road types (narrow and curved or wide and straight roads). When walking, we can use pedestrian guides on commercial maps such as NAVER Map, Kakao Map and Google Map. When using pedestrian guides, people often prefer the fastest and shortest route, even if there are steep slopes or height differences caused by stairs. If there is no difficulty in walking, slopes and surface materials that may cause inconvenience are obstacles that can be overcome.
Universal Design City, SeoulThe city of Seoul started an urban design project in 2007. Within the signage maintenance project, public facilities that were chaotically installed on the streets were integrated, and efforts have been made to transform Seoul into a cleaner and more sophisticated city. The Seoul Design Olympiad, held from 2008 to 2010, was a comprehensive design festival that showed the will and vision of Seoul to challenge beyond design. In 2009, the Seoul Design Foundation was established to support projects such as the operation of the DDP, design research, commercialization, and international events. In 2010, Seoul was selected as the ‘World Design Capital’. ‘Seoul Design Week’ has been held yearly since 2015, to revitalize the design industry by holding conferences, expositions, exhibitions, and markets.
The Social Role of ArchitectsI started building residence and residential spaces related to disasters, because I started thinking that, maybe in the past, I was designing for the privileged class. Because there are cases where people with wealth and authority will construct buildings and structures to visualize and show off their wealth and authority that is not tangible to the human eyes. That made me think that I should be constructing structures for the public and that is why I started building architectures in disaster sites. Of course, it is not bad to build architectures for the former. But we do need to think further about this. There are cases where developers and construction companies are pleased about new projects that may emerge when there is a disaster. However, the victims would of the disaster would be suffering a lot. That is why I thought that social role of an architect would like in supporting refugees of disasters.
Humanising our CitiesWe are passionate about the environment and the buildings that surround us. I believe we are living in a very interesting era in the history. We actually have choices (rather than not having them). We can achieve very interesting transitions, if we were to make choices. However, such transformation cannot be achieved with the developers or the architects alone. We can only accomplish such changes when we all talk about buildings and the structures together.
Universal Design Project for Convenient Spaces: Public RestroomsThe Republic of Korea is experiencing radical demographic changes, such as the super-aged society and an increase in the foreign population. The public sector is obliged to create comfortable spaces for parents to go out with infants as well as an environment for seniors, persons with disabilities, and children. Recently, public spaces have been improved with the acknowledgment of diversity and the reinforcement of legal regulations. However, laws do not regulate details of small-scale unit spaces, which have low priorities when it comes to spatial improvement. For example, the SMG remodeled many aged community service centers during the “‘Outreach Project for Spatial Improvement of Community Service Centers,” but restrooms were not included in the scope of this project. As such, Seoul has built and improved good spaces, but it excluded small-scale spaces like restrooms. Among diverse spaces, restrooms, in particular, are crucial for solving physiological issues. Therefore, restrooms should be available at any place. Though Koreans tend to allow people to use restrooms freely, many restrooms in old buildings of Seoul are not open to the public. Accordingly, the Design Policy Division of Seoul and the Seoul Universal Design Center (“Center”) selected restrooms, places with an urgent need for universal design among small-scale unit spaces, as the first target for improvement, as well as a target for the “Outreach Project for Spatial Improvement of Community Service Centers.”
Design 2.0 Design Policy and Future StrategiesI am honored to be speaking with Thomas Heatherwick and Shigeru Ban and I think the interesting designs of Lee Dal-woo was a good stimulus. I will. I will now think again about the actions to be taken by a big city like Seoul Metropolitan Government. My presentation will be about the fun city with vitality, Seoul. I will be presenting in the order of 5 Vision Principles that were carried out.
Creative Design for Social Problem Solving and Social Responsibility TherethroughThe top 10% of the world's population are able to spend $10 a day (about 10,000 won). This means that the other 90%, being unable to spend $10 a day, are very poor. 80% of them spend only about $2 a day. Design is not about making things pretty and beautiful to increase sales, but about finding and solving problems in a certain situation. Solving problems in an innovative and creative way is an essential part of design. Which group has more problems in life: the 10% of the population who can spend $10 a day or the 90% who can't? The 10% of people have issues with desires, and 90% have issues with needs. In other words, 90% of people have problems that are directly related to survival and they need to be considered more seriously. But 99.9% of designers only design for the top 10%. The real social problem is to leave it alone and only engage in the problem of fueling human desires.
Public Design and Platform Media Facade of CommunicationPlatform media facade of communication in the city New platform is now required for a city image that incorporates the storytelling based on the regional/historical identity as the need to improve the aged downtown (original downtown) is being emphasized. Therefore, there are more municipal governments that desire to re-brand various parts of cities that are aiming towards the fourth industrial cities for citizens and visitors who come to cities. Cities are scrambling to develop the public design system and to transform into future cities. Panaplex-type bus shelters are being installed as DID (Digital Infotainment Display) that enable mobile-linked interactive functions, and the city maps are being implemented in various parts of the cities as AI information that is guided by idols, along with experiential AR/VR media. Although it may be partial, ecosystem evolution that uses media that aims for comprehensive media in key hub cities is transforming cities in line with the hyper-connected era through activities such as pilot operation of unmanned vehicles.
The future of smart office, after COVID-19The spread of the corona virus in 2020 has caused rapid changes in work patterns due to the normalization of working at home. Although there is a realistic limit to building a work environment with a specific concept in an unprepared situation, efforts are being made to respond to these changes in their own way, and each company needs time to compromise to create a safer work environment. It is time for designers to make efforts to find the interface between a space that harmoniously connects people and a space that prioritizes safety. Although it is necessary to change the philosophy of space itself, it is expected that human attempts to challenge the limits will continue.