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Pluriversal design and desire-based design: Desire as the impulse for human flourishing

Leitão, Renata (2020) Pluriversal design and desire-based design: Desire as the impulse for human flourishing. In: DRS Pluriversal Design SIG, 4 Jun 2020, New Orleans, USA.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.21606/pluriversal.2020.011


A world of many centers is a world where multiple worlds can flourish—where
communities outside of the Center can design their own life projects, which reflect who
they are, what they value, and who their ancestors had been. This paper argues that a
Pluriversal Design—which aims to nurture alternative models of life and ways of worldmaking—is necessarily desire-based, in contrast with conventional needs-based
approaches. I make a case for Social Design researchers and practitioners to hone our
craft to respond primarily to the communities' desire, in contrast with the current focus
on their needs, problems and deficits. I argue that needs-based approaches are
conservative, implying the reproduction of a model of life —i.e., what is ‘desirable’ is
supposedly know from the start and/or externally defined. Such approaches do not
encourage the creation of new ‘possibles’. On the other hand, a desire-based approach is
open-ended. In terms of creating a world of many worlds, what is the final result? We do
not know yet; we will be doing something that has never been done before.
Metaphorically, desire-based social change is about trailblazing with the help of a
compass. Desire is the force that we have to engage when our task is to create new ways
of shaping the human presence on this

Item Type: Conference/Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Desire; needs-centered approaches; Pluriverse; Social Design
Divisions: Faculty of Design
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2021 16:15
Last Modified: 20 Dec 2021 19:02
URI: https://openresearch.ocadu.ca/id/eprint/3180

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