Ideas Arrangements Effects: Systems Design and Social Justice
The Design Studio for Social Intervention
Foreword by Arturo Escobar
A guide for using design principles to inform and shape radical politics
Ideas are embedded in social arrangements, which in turn produce effects.
With this simple premise, this radically accessible systems design bookmakes a compelling case for arrangementsas a rich and overlooked terrain for social justice and world building. Unpacking how ideas like racism and sexism remain sturdy by embedding themselves in everything from physical and social infrastructure to everyday speech and thought habits, this book gives readers the tools to sense, intervene in and imagine new arrangements. Using diverse examples from their work and others, DS4SI offers readers a roadmap for using social interventions to invite the larger public into imagining and creating a more just and vibrant world.
“Throughout their work, DS4SI strives to enact the principle that design is not just about problem-solving within existing paradigms and social orders, it is about world building, about imagining and constructing new territories of life and difference… This is design’s imagination at its best, the grounds for a genuinely transformative design praxis. It is a route to disclosing new worlds and bringing them into existence.” – Arturo Escobar, author of Designing the Pluriverse
“As we face this dire moment of climate change, tyranny, mass extinction and international war on the global scale, and poverty, housing shortages, and stagnant wages at home, we need tools that we can use to address these problems, and it can’t be just the same old tools we’ve been using all along. This is where this excellent guide to ideas-arrangements-effects comes in.” – Mindy Thompson Fullilove, author of Root Shock: How Tearing Up City Neighborhoods Hurts America, and What We Can Do About It
Bio: The Design Studio for Social Intervention is dedicated to changing how social justice is imagined, developed and deployed in the United States. Situated at the intersections of design practice, social justice, public art, and popular engagement, DS4SI designs and tests social interventions with and on behalf of marginalized populations, controversies and ways of life.Founded in 2005 and based in Boston, DS4SI is a space where activists, artists, academics and the larger public come together to imagine new approaches to social change and new solutions to complex social issues. Continue reading →