What inspires Design Factory staff to do what they do? How to ignite the passion of students and fellow collaborators? The upcoming RUN-EU Super Week on 25 – 29 October 2021 provides an excellent opportunity to reflect on this. If I had to give our three points – or three coffee cups so to speak, these would be passion for doing, think different, and follow your heart.
Design Factory is an evolving concept, never finished, complete or ready. This means that you need to explore, experiment and do it with empathy. No other person can give you the right answers and solutions before hand. You need to explore and experiment what works and adapt accordingly. In doing so you need to have empathy for the students that are the center of the activities, all the teacher-facilitators and other stakeholders involved in the learning environment. Therefore, we think following your heart, your conscience, your inner guide is important when working with people. Try to think and see issues from the others’ perspective, how can you arrive at solutions that are good from the perspective of those people involved. When in doubt, what does your conscience tell you?
There is no construction plan, playbook or service blueprint for Design Factory that you can directly implement in your own institution. This is the part, where you need to use your creativity in coming up with a solution – or a perpetual beta of a solution. The interdisciplinary and international nature of Design Factory requires that you are able to view problems from various perspectives, from different disciplines and cultures. Simply put think different.
Finally, passion for doing is something common for all the Design Factories. It is not just about imagining, planning, theorizing or daydreaming what good learning is about – but putting things into practice, doing things, learning new ways of working, new methods and tools and approaches for problem solving and design – and enjoying it. For igniting the passion – you need to first ignite the passion in yourself.