Autoeducazione (self-education) was a 5-part series of seminars developed for the BA and MA students of the Industrial Design Department at Lund University in Sweden, in collaboration with Sheida Amiri-Rigi.

The seminars actively explored the potential of informal and non-institutional approaches to design education, leveraging dialogue as a means of knowledge creation and learning, and providing students with a space to take control of their educational trajectories collectively. Each session was based on themes suggested by students or related to their active projects, which were discussed within the group through a non-hierarchical approach.

autoeducazione posters

Autoeducazione was in many ways an extension of a previous research and education project titled ‘Design Discussions’, as well as a result of a long-standing interest in alternative approaches to design education within and outside of academic or institutional spaces. The themes that were presented as part of the 5 sessions the seminar was comprised by included: self-education, collective design, transdisciplinarity, adapting, the future of products, the influence of context on design, physical vs digital in design processes and outcomes, functions and future of the prototype.

Sessions were approximately 2 hours long, mostly based on open and horizontal conversation between students and organisers, and at times using projects presented by students as case studies to build more explicit connections between theory and practice in design and other adjacent fields of work and study.

The purpose of the seminar series was not only to empower students and make them aware of their collective value in their own education, of the possibilities that self-organising provides in environments of deep cross-contamination like universities, but it also aimed to establish new methods of thinking and therefore designing together, that could be employed by students and young professionals that increasingly start to recognise the interconnected nature of different design disciplines, the need to work transdisciplinarily, and that of interfacing and sharing a practice with diverse and extended teams.

autoeducazione poster