Humanity, as a whole, has been facing highly complex times since 2019, when the 10th International Senses & Sensitivity Conference’19: Lost in (G)localisation took place, in Lisbon, Portugal, and as reinforced by the following edition, the 11th International Senses & Sensitivity Conference’21: Designing the next generations(c)tions, in Bari, Italy. In 2022, due to a variety of factors, including geostrategic ones, complexity takes on multiple 360° horizons. Globalisation (as the planetary “habitat” of a community linked by common growth) has come to a halt. On the other hand, the possibility of scarcity and mistrust, exclusion and isolation are looming. In this context, and without forgetting the SDGs, design reflection should aim to understand the complexity of an efficient and sufficient intervention to live in societies where new goals and barriers start to emerge. There are new frontiers that require new paths for the discipline of design.
The questions no longer come from the past, as we pointed out at the 11th Conference. Too much support in the search for answers to old questions can no longer withstand the impact of new realities. We need to reflect on methods, processes, and procedures. To learn from experiences. Rethink issues, not only at the beginning of processes, but also during their development. Questioning previous positions and goals initiated within and on the periphery of the discipline, as we established at the 9th Conference in 2017 (Design Beyond Borders). Living and designing presents itself as a highly complex task. And not only for designers or for the discipline of Design itself.
Learning to design has become a collective need, for everyone. And not only to avoid mistakes or flaws, but also to survive, to resist the uncertainty established in complex times. These times, which seem to be here to stay for a while longer, will require us to learn to think with other mental models, approaches and to use ad hoc guides.
Not only in the more or less well-known paths of Design, but also in the design of other academic-scientific disciplines (Health Sciences and Technologies, Engineering, Social Sciences, Biotechnology…). New routes for which we hardly have maps or precise data.Complex routes that speak of the transversality of design, of going beyond our borders, of accepting “interferences” and not only transfers from other disciplines, as well as accepting the complexity of transdisciplinarity.
The 12th International Conference Senses & Sensibility’23: Design & Complexity aims to bring together original contributions from researchers, practitioners, students and academics for the opening of interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches that raise, as we highlighted in the 2021 conference, the role of activatable “inter/actions” in design for the construction of long-term scenarios.
The aim is to activate a new perspective in which the internal problems of the different fields of design are addressed, opening their borders to the design of others, outside the discipline, with a new co-generating responsibility that, through research and transfer, acquires new determinations and purposes.The “interactions” and “trans-actions” of the 12th Conference in 2023 are thus realised in plans with open and hybrid 360° horizons to activate processes that can involve design practices from, within or on the periphery and beyond the discipline of Design and enable design capacities in a “multiversal” perspective, requiring the interpretation of the fields such as, but not exclusively: places or possible territories: interiors and peripheries, beyond borders…. To explore these new fields of research, the themes of the conference will not be given by the organisation in a closed scheme but will be the result of a co-generative approach based on the interests given by the coordinators and participants. The University of Malaga and UNIDCOM/IADE are open to the possible proposals that the academic community may generate, around a common purpose.