Category Archives: Projects


OHO, a creative approach on Helsinki. During Helsinki Design Week students of visual communication, product design, and architecture at Aalto University spent a week exploring Helsinki neighbourhoods and local topics from diff erent perspectives. The participants developed themes and concepts referring to the neighbourhood based on social issues, personal experiences, and visual language.

Open Design Cape Town

During the Open Design Festival Cape Town 2016, pupils of the NGO organisation ‘Up for all’ explored for a week their neighbourhood Langa from different perspectives. The participants developed themes and concepts referring to the neighbourhood, based on social issues, personal experiences and its visual language.

Langa, literally meaning “sun” in Xhosa, is the oldest historically township in the Western Cape. Strategically located in the geographic center of Cape Town Municipality it has the potential to be a new heart for the post-apartheid city of Cape Town. The nonprofit organization ‘Brothers for All’ turns lives around by giving technology and entrepreneurship opportunities to the youth. It trains them to code and be empowered with the correct skills so that they can confidently and positively contribute to society.

A big thank you goes out to all who made it possible: Sune from Open Design Festival Cape Town, Sihle from ‘Up for all’ and of course to all the students participating. This project is made possible by the generous support from the Creative Industry Fund NL in the Netherlands. The social design workshop is an initiative from andrews:degen, a research-based graphic design agency, located in Amsterdam, the


In the harbour neighbourhood Muide-Meulestede in Northern Ghent, 30 students with backgrounds in advertising, digital design, film and interior design from LUCA School of Arts Ghent and Brussels are submerged for one week in social design. They dived into topics such as mobility, refugees, solitude, poverty, interculturality,… During the first week of Spring they observe, interview, draw, photograph and design in the neighbourhood. The students work towards solutions for social challenges and ideate and prototype (im)possible answers.

7IS #2

This publication is the outcome of the second workshop conducted together with students from the graphic, interior and industrial design department of the university ‘George Enescu’, in Iași. Located in the Moldavian region, Iași has traditionally been one of the leading centers of Romanian social, cultural, academic and artistic life. Nearly one third of Iași’s inhabitants are students, making the city a breeding ground for a new academic generation.

Gev Rec

The research was conducted together with students from the graphic design department at the Dokuz Eylűl University in Izmir, Turkey. The participants were developing among other things a colour scheme of the city, creating neighbourhood maps, alienating iconic structures of the city or making a ‘How to behave guide’ for men. Izmir is a large metropolis in the western extremity of Anatolia. It is one of the most westernised cities in Turkey and the third biggest city in Turkey with 2.8 million inhabitants. The metropolitan area spreads along the outlying waters of the beautiful Gulf of Izmir.


The research was focusing on social issues and graphical communication elements in the city of Bucharest. We were exploring the city with nineteen students from the graphic design and the fine art department from the National University of Arts, UNArte in Bucharest. Students developed interventions and campaigns referring to topics of tolerance, environment, traffic, wayfinding and many others. Including design thinking as a way to support social change and improvement.


The publication is the outcome of a workshop conducted with 15 graphic design students and teachers from the Modern International Art and Design Academy (MIADA) in Chongqing while we were teaching at the MIADA for a semester. The city is a metropolitan area of more than 31 million people in the center of China. The research was focusing on personal visual stories and experiences relating to the city. The collection of work reflects a contemporary critical and social orientated perspective on the modern Chinese urban lifestyle. The rural depopulation around the city was an important and recurring topic.


Thirty-four students from the Photo/Video FVPCI department at the National University of Arts in Bucharest developed different themes referring to their home city of Bucharest. Abandond places were visited and documented, traffic problems visualized and poetic interpretations of the city were designed.