In tune with the centre’s wider strategic goal, research in this strand examine the de-centring of design practice away from singular object to complex ecologies, objects and systems, and the embedding of design thinking into management and organisational processes.
The 2015 international conference ‘From 'Soft' to 'Hard' Power? Changing Visions of Diplomacy by Design from 1945 Onwards’, organised by Dr Harriet Atkinson and Dr Verity Clarkson, considered how design has been used by governments as an object of exchange or as a tool of diplomacy – from buildings, to interiors, to objects, to fashion and beyond. Proceedings from the conference were published as a special issue of Design and Culture. The Journal of the Design Studies Forum, Volume 9, 2017 Issue 2: Special Issue: Design as an Object of Diplomacy Post-1945.
A second conference examining design and the economy was held in autumn 2016, ‘Facing the World Differently? Seventy Years on from the Britain Can Make It’