‘Democrazy’ designing for democracy in Eastern Europe
For design to attend to democratic endeavours it is not enough to rest on the claim that design is implicitly political, but to understand how democratisation — often in the name of political modernisation — has designed different social realities. Focusing on the ‘how to’ of infrastructuring for democracy has advanced a designerly politics-in-practice, and exploring political concepts in design experiments have made design more aware of the democratic conflict. Theoretical work-in-progress, this paper asks whether the concepts internalised within design literature are valid enough to think about infrastructuring for democracy in the context of Eastern Europe. We depart from the theoretical and practical difference between design for politics and political design to 1) understand how each of these concepts enable a democracy to come in Eastern Europe’s Romania, and 2) what are the entry points for design research to understand the democratic experience. We explore this through a participatory intervention in Bucharest.
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