Equal parts science gathering and participatory event, “Size Up: Changing Paradigms in Social Impact Design” aims to spark hybrid, flexible, and engaging conversations through a series of workshops led by Detroit-based artists and activists.
The event, from 3-9 p.m. on Thursday, March 31, at the Art & Architecture Building, will feature faculty from the University of Michigan’s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning who will moderate thought-provoking panel discussions and input from design experts and the public sector.
The symposium stands as a prototype of what the blended future of university events could look like, enabling local engagement while tapping into global expertise, and creating multiple layers of equity and access in ensuring that the exchange is not isolated from communities. seek to make an impact, organizers say.
Accompanied by live music from My Detroit Players and DJ Los, the 2022 Wallenberg Symposium emphasizes diversity, equity and inclusion, allowing attendees to experience the power of the arts while addressing and discussing issues cultural.
“It’s a way for us to level the playing field between international experts and our Detroit-based experts to make sense of what’s being considered scientifically and understand how it really affects communities and how we work and live,” Anya said. Sirota, associate dean for academic initiatives at Taubman. “We treat everyone the same in their expertise. I think this is very important for us in a DEI setting. The stock market is not disengaged from local players. We are together.
Social impact design connects many disciplines, appealing to those seeking to solve humanitarian problems and make a positive impact in the world. But how does this field adapt to the immense social transition, to political accounts and to the ecological crisis?
The public forum brings together artists, architects, urban planners, activists and thinkers from around the world to assess and discuss ways to meaningfully intervene. It places architecture, art, culture, music and political activism on an equal footing. In the process, the event showcases work that fairly addresses social issues, especially in places where design has traditionally been unavailable or inaccessible.
Sirota said the idea of questioning expertise makes the symposium different from similar events in that it asks students and faculty to learn from each other, equalizing knowledge production and source. Short workshops are held after each speaker’s presentation, providing a platform to “live-hash ideas” and collectively digest their hypothetical impact.
Bringing top musicians from Detroit helps demystify the idea that entertainment arts and scholarship are separate, Sirota said.
“This is not all about how ambitious DEI is. It’s actually living the concepts by introducing a radical horizontality in terms of who produces new knowledge,” she said. “For me, it’s a DEI framework lived and not projected. I think we are going to work very hard to start living by this philosophy and these concepts. Rather than planning for the future, I think we’ll start now.
Sirota and Jose Sanchez, a Detroit-based architect, game designer, and theorist, are moderating the event, which is also sponsored by UM Public Design Corps.
Speakers: World Leaders in Design for Social Impact
- The Collective Etc. (Maxence Bohn) is a non-profit organization based in France that works with local communities to address the use of public spaces.
- Chokwe Antar Lumumba, is the mayor of Jackson, Mississippi.
- Niklas Maak is the art editor of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and an architectural theorist working in Berlin.
- Mitsuhiro Sakakibara is an architecture and urban planning researcher based in Kyoto.
- Tatjana Schneider is Professor of History and Theory of Architecture and the City at the Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany.
Facilitators: Detroit-based artists and activists
Music: live performances
My Detroit Players features bassist Emily Rogers, a producer who is actively working as a songwriter, musician, dancer, choreographer, event curator, musical director, host and DJ. Other members include: JRGotTheHiTS (drums), Shaphan Maestro Williams (keyboards), Duminie Deporres (guitar), DJ Los (turntables), Zac Land (trombone) and Nick Speed (vocal and music production center).
The symposium continues the tradition of honoring the humanitarian work of Raoul Wallenberg, a Taubman College alumnus distinguished for his courageous actions in German-occupied Hungary during World War II.
More information: Jacob Comerci, [email protected], or Anya Sirota