Service Design meets strategic action: exploring new tools for activating change

Laura Santamaria
Loughborough University London, UK

Ksenija Kuzmina
Loughborough University London, UK

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Ingår i: ServDes.2020 Tensions, Paradoxes and Plurality Conference Proceedings, 2-5th February 2021, Melbourne, Australia

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 173:82, s. 633-642

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Publicerad: 2020-12-22

ISBN: 978-91-7929-779-4

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Design can positively contribute towards the highly complex social, economic and environmental problems we face today. One key area in design for social change is to empower citizens to activate change that disrupts built-in systemic inequalities and exploitative practices. This workshop presents the ‘Action Heroes Journey’, a resource kit co- developed by designers and CitizensUK community organisers to enable active citizen participation in public life. Based on Joseph Campbell’s (2008) Hero’s Journey storytelling framework, the toolkit integrates methods from service design and community organising and is aimed to help users to discover and align their personal values with the future development of their community. Although the resource was co-designed with and for young people initially, the archetypal structure allows the embedding of vernacular goals and meanings – i.e. increasing leadership, participation and co-creation that is meaningful at a personal level. It also connects with other stakeholder’s priorities, for example, NGOs and local government citizen and sustainability strategies. Participants will learn how service design can be used to develop creative leadership capacity and enhancing wider and more diverse engagement in the socio-political sphere.


service design; activism; metaphor; storytelling


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