Track 3.d Introduction: How does design express value?
A general view, often presented in a political context, suggests investment in design may create societal benefits, like economic growth, employment, competitiveness, and convenience. Conducted at a general level with aggregate variables, such measurements provide very limited insights and can even be misleading. A different approach takes a particular view of a designed artefact, object, system or service. Addressing the benefactors, users and consumers, we may be able to reach an individual value, which in turn may be aggregated to assess a market, KPI or similar.
How does design express value? And how can we measure the value?
To design is to create value for somebody. However, the value depends on who judges it and their and their personal values.
According to John Heskett;
“Design, stripped to its essence, can be defined as the human capacity to shape and make our environment in ways without precedent in nature that serves our needs and gives meaning to our lives”. (Heskett, 2005).
This suggests that artefacts, objects, systems and services, which are available to us, may influence and serve us in different ways depending on our position within a particular environment. Any artefact may affect our physical well-being. This reflects preferences and other values may essentially be emotions and feelings.
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