The International Design Center in Tokyo, and the Japan Industrial Design Promotion Organization recently hosted the International Design Symposium 2011 for international design leaders from education, industry and government. Symposium speakers included: Mary McBride of Pratt Institute, graduate program in Design Management, Patrick Whitney of IIT and Uday Athavankar of Indian Institute of Technolgy, Miles Pennington of Royal College of Art, Tomoko Ina, from the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Yoshiaki Takahashi, of the Economic and Social Research Institute of Japan, Akihiko Ishizuka, Head of Global Design Business, Fujitsu Design Limited and Jun Furuya, Director of Incubation Design Center, Hitachi, Ltd., Yusuke Ashizawa of JIDPO. Haruo Hashimoto of JIDPO acted as moderator.
Mary McBride Ph.D., Director of the graduate program in Design Management at Pratt Institute, discussed the role of design in rebalancing our economic frameworks and mindsets to encourage Triple Bottom Line business practices.
“The way we balance individual design mindsets will help shape our world and its possible futures. If we do not rebalance our individual mindsets as a human community, and as a design community, we may not be able to re-structure our lives and our world.
Our mindsets establish our relationship to each other and to our world. Our individual mindsets are part of a larger mindset, a paradigm, a collective mindset shared by individuals,industries and societies. Individual mindsets and collective paradigms are necessary; they focus our vision and direct our actions.Paradigms also constrain vision and action. Our dominant mindset or paradigm as a world community is an economic one. We focus on our global economy and taking the actions necessary to grow it – again. We focus on the “Bottom Line” of economic growth.
Financial growth of incomes, investments and profits is necessary, but not sufficient. We need to grow our economy with a more balanced mindset. We need a “Triple Bottom Line” (TBL) mindset that focuses our design intention on growing an economy that enriches our planet and our people. Companies and commerce will shape our collective future with their design intentions.
We need to examine those intentions and determine which future we designing? Are we designing a future where economic growth enlivens our world and enriches our community with each other? Or are we designing a world where hot mindsets, hot markets and hot products put even our economies at risk?
In the Pratt Design Management Program, we are using a “Triple Bottom Line by Design” (TBLD) mindset. We are leading as if life matters and designing futures for all and each.” Our program participants are working within their companies to use strategic design to shape advantage for their firms and our shared world.”