Friday, October 27, 2006

We Got Sick of Hearing About Design & China, So we Got on a Plane and Went There

Design and usability in China ...

"There has certainly been a great deal of speculation lately regarding the real or perceived rise of Chinese industrial design. We say “perceived rise” to emphasize that their impending world domination in this field is not a foregone conclusion, despite the frequent flurries of listserve chatter and design-conference panel discussions supporting such a notion.

We would agree that China’s entrée into the global design community demands careful attention as the stakes are high—remember when US factories weren’t filled with yuppies and their Sub-Zero refrigerators (made in China)? But so much of what we have been hearing smacks of alarmism and over-reaching conjecture. We were dogged by the question of what is really going on with Chinese industrial design—education and practice—so we decided to go there and get a glimpse for ourselves.

Spanning May and June, 2005, we spent three weeks traveling in China—starting in Shanghai, then 1,000 miles west to Chengdu (Szechuan province), and back east to Beijing. In addition to meeting with Chinese industrial designers and even western entrepreneurs probing the mainland design market, we had the good fortune of being invited to lecture at one of the most established industrial design departments in the country—Southern Yangtze University, School of Design, located 80 miles east of Shanghai. (They were extremely gracious hosts, and we are grateful for all of their efforts.)

So we thought we would share some of our impressions with Core77 fans."    (Continued via uiGarden)    [Usability Resources]

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