A global design agency?

Department of Design building

Department of Design building

During the launch week of  Department of Design , I was asked by the DESIGN INDABA team, along with other thinkers and doers, to imagine that a global Department of Design existed. And, to then think of a global issue that they could address, or one that should be on their agenda.

What if there were a global Department of Design – a sort of creative hub at the United Nations, say, that addressed global issues? What should be on its agenda? What issues, objects and services should it tackle? We asked four thinkers and doers, who or what they would report to the Department of Design.

Here is my response:

I would report the legacy of our Apartheid cities, and our subsequent lack of urban design and spatial planning to address this. While our policies and plans are generally good, poor political and hence design decisions are being made, which are contrary to the vision of more integrated, inclusive and sustainable cities. Instead, building new cities and communities far from the centres of our region only promotes more sprawl, fragmentation and an unsustainable form of our city. We must report the contradiction between our common vision and the design decision-making.

Read the responses of Renny Ramakers, Lyall Sprong and Dillion Sipho Phiri at the DESIGN INDABA website here