Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Can design help save the world? David Berman

I went along to see Dave Berman speak at the AGDA conference "Can Design Help Change the World", these are some of my favourite quotes from from his somewhat hyperactive, but sensational and thought-provoking presentation.

The whole article will be published on Bindarri in the next couple of days.

“ Right now to 4 billion humans, the Internet is just a rumour. But in the next 10 years the majority of humans will have access. But the experience won’t be on a computer screen it will be on the small screen – the truly mobile screen. When we get there, will we use [small screen interactions] to convince larger and larger populations that they don’t really belong in our societies? That they have to be whiter, or taller or smell nicer? Will we use it to ‘trick’ them into buying more stuff they don’t need or will we use it to share ideas that really deserve to be shared?”

In Ghana, where 20% of pharmaceuticals are fake designers have worked with companies to create a labelling system. A parent of a sick child SMSs the product barcode for verification as to whether or not the product is legitimate – “It’s a beautiful, simple communication idea that saves lives.” says Berman.

“The design profession is an old one and we get to choose what its all about. Hoping that most choose to share the faith the world needs – democracy, telecommunications, hope and justice - it’s the stuff the world really needs, not selling more sugar water to children in Africa.”

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