Friday of good news! My master thesis is now published and available for consult. 🎉
Collective weaving of territories: Exploring diasporic identities with Latin American Migrants.
This interaction design thesis contributes to the discussion in Decolonial design, and in particular it explores diasporic identities of Latin American migrants. Between adaptation and assimilation, several questions arise: About traces, values, practices and the materialities of these aspects, as well as the challenges for Interaction design and its methods to address them.
The design outcome is the concept of a collective identity territory expressed in an interactive map, that is continuously woven digitally through an app interface. The map is populated with memories, songs, recipes and dreams that materialise the diasporic situatedness. I consider it a critical fabulation on what maps can be.
The contribution of the outcome appeals to the notion of the Pluriverse to decolonise the notions of hybridity, identity and territory. The research departs from the notions of Chicano and transnational feminism, postcolonial and decolonial theories, epistemologies of the South and critical design. In the center of the design process is the collective speculation, using codesign methods to encourage shared reflections through visual and verbal resources.
A new method explores the narrative qualities of lines to weave and wander the interactive map.
My thesis project is now published, and it’s an open resource for everyone to read, refer to and discuss: Storytelling for intercultural dialogue: experience design with unaccompanied minors from Afghanistan. Using theoretical basis of decolonising and feminist theories, this project was developed as a facilitated codesign process, where the participants -a team of friends from Afghanistan and Sweden, created together a design concept for selling and sharing bolani, a kind of flatbread from Afghanistan, in order to prompt solidarity and empathy from equality, and to create their own possibilities to stay in Sweden.
This project is an attempt to bring together design and activism, where I reflect over the roles of the designer as a facilitator-listener, the role of the participants as codesigners-storytellers and the main purpose of the design as an object for democratic conversation.It was such a rich experience to work with it and with the amazing people I met in the way. 💚
Welcome to read, share and comment!
This project explores storytelling tools for the collaborative work with persons in vulnerable situation, in this case, a group of unaccompanied minors from Afghanistan, living in Umeå, Sweden. The concept presented is the prototype of an eating experience, BAHAM bolani: An idea for a social company where the participants are active into creating their own possibilities to stay in Sweden.
With their own stories, they fill in the gap of how unaccompanied minors and asylum seekers are depicted in the dominant narrative. It is them providing meaning to the design concept.
The theoretical approach is from a decolonising and feminist point of view, with collaborative design methods. In the discussion, I debate the need of more listening tools for the design community based on these theories, because they allow the designer to challenge their own cultural assumptions, and meet the participants in a more humble and equal way, especially when working with persons in vulnerable situations.