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.
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.”
From First Class to CoachUniversal design is increasingly becoming an important part of our lives. Universal design should ensure transparency and involve as many people as possible. Universal design encompasses all fields, including economic, architectural, and social design. The history of universal design can be said to have started with the Weimar Declaration. The Universal Design Forum is a German non-profit organization whose purpose is to create a safe place for all of us. We see universal design as an economic and social mission. There is an old German saying, “A good idea reflects the times.” Today, with rapid changes with industrial development and technology, it is necessary to seek changes in production to accommodate good ideas, and to apply universal design globally by changing all strategies and methods that have been pursued previously. In the past, most buildings were made of wood. Wood has the advantage of allowing you to build a house in a short time, but it has the disadvantage of low sustainability because it is vulnerable to fire and wind. At the time of the Bauhaus, standards of design and construction were defined. The definition concerned planning standards and standards for how a particular building should be built based on ergonomics. It was published as a book and used as a guidebook for builders worldwide.
Challenges and Tasks of City of SEOULThere are numerous definitions of universal design by experts and scholars. Among the definitions, I think The University of Buffalo defines universal design best: "A design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation.” Universal design is not a result, but rather a process of making. In this context, through various projects, the city of Seoul is implementing universal design that involves the public, solves everyday problems, and ensures that no one is marginalized. Each and All, between individuality and versatility, how can a design for a particular person become a design for all?
The Research of Universal Design for the solution of Regional problems with agingCompared with global trends, Korean society is aging very rapidly. We are already entering a super-aged society, and we need to confront the seriousness of the issue. Aging is more prominent in rural areas, and the proportion of the elderly living alone is also increasing - the number is expected to increase steadily from 6.9% of the total households in 2013 to 15.4% in 2035. It should be noted that women account for 75 to 83% of these single-person households. Judging by these figures, future universal design should consider not only age-friendly design but women-friendly design as well.
SMG Universal DesignUntil now, the public sector has prioritized efficiency enhancement through ‘standards’ in terms of service provision. Today, we are rapidly moving from mass production from the perspective of suppliers to the era of small batch production from the perspective of consumers. Because it is a smart era armed with various information and technologies, the standard framework alone cannot satisfy the diverse needs of citizens or lead to an affluent life. At this point, we need to think about who public design is for. WHO; Who is Universal Design for? Citizens who do not have disabilities and are still young do not feel the need to be specially considered by someone in their daily life. However, according to statistical data, the rate of congenital disability is only 5%, and temporary or situational disability that can be experienced in daily life accounts for a much larger proportion than permanent disability. Therefore, when we consider universal design in the public domain, we need to approach it from the perspective of various lives and situations, rather than looking only at people with disabilities. The diversity of physical conditions such as height, strength, dexterity, balance, attention, etc., the difference in language ability based on language and expressive power, the difference in sensory ability such as hearing, sight, and touch, and the difference in cognitive ability such as comprehension and intellectual ability that should be considered
Development of Participatory Universal Design CultureThe Center operates civic participation groups to consider the “viewpoint of the weak” or the “viewpoint of the citizens.” The first civic participation group recruited last year monitored eight public facilities in Seoul, including Donuimun Museum Village, Oil Tank Culture Park, and the Seoul Museum of History. The second civic participation group this year is visiting facilities that are close to the people of Seoul, such as the Sejong-daero Walkway in Gwanghwamun, Jongmyo Shrine, Yejang Park, and the Seoul Museum of Craft Art. The civic participation group uploads posts about the benefits or improvements that are needed for each place they monitor on social media or blogs to share information with the people.
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.
From Ideas to Implementation, Transforming Limits into Opportunities in DesignAn inclusive city through practical design solutions With plummeting global population, we are heading toward an era where people establish their own worldviews. Wouldn’t we be able to embrace the city we are living in today a little more if we realize our ideas into practice and talk about the warmth of the world? Let’s talk about the seven key words of love, memory, enjoyment, respect, imagination, value, and nature.
Seoul Design International Forum 2022Based on the vision to “Create Value through Design,” the Seoul Metropolitan Government implements its various design policies ranging from the macro plans for landscape to the micro plans for service improvement. To ensure that citizens can fully savor the attractiveness of natural environment and spaces across the city and enjoy thoughtful care and respect, the role of design in the future society will be even greater. This forum held with the theme, “DESIGN x Seoul : How Does Design Enrich Our Future,” will learn how design serves as an engine for enhancing values of cities through various examples of cities. Also, it will review how citizens in those cities enjoy these value.
Problem solving and city making - A design approach to cities and their difficult social problems (Summary of the recorded speech)In modern cities, chronic social problems such as deepening inequality, aging, the spread of chronic diseases, difficulties in immigrant integration, and, more generally, threats to social cohesion are intertwined. These problems can be defined as 'chronic' problems because there is no solution when the commonly used conceptual framework is applied. On the other hand, by changing the way we look at these problems, we can find solutions within new systems (new social, cultural, economic and technological systems). To do this, you must have both practical sense and creativity, which in fact corresponds to design capabilities (and that applies to whoever does the design).
Memories are Designed by Experiencing PlacesKorean has entered an aged society in 2017. Korea is estimated to become a super-aged society, defined as a society where over 20% of the population are seniors 65 years or above, in 2025. The city of Seoul is where population aging occurs at the fastest rate, with the aging index having increased rapidly by about 127.3% in the last ten years. Dementia is the most common disease in the elderly population, which is increasing at a fast rate. What would be necessary to prevent dementia, a disease that gives pain and burden to patients, their family members, and even society?