In the first workshop called “Designers are future makers” we asked the students to apply research on a specific object that they found in the vicinity of the college. Our aim was to stimulate the students to question the objects and their existence by answering questions about materials, function, time and association. We took the students outside college to find design in their everyday lives and make them work within the local context. We want students to ask questions about what they can do in their community. We want students to create a new context to design through their local research and create a future scenario from this.

We took them through a basic design process. Starting off by doing research and translating this in a new design. In this new design it was important to place this in the context of its use. The predictions are made based on the research they have. On the first day one we worked with the students on performing a research on the object the students found as a group. A description of the object was made at the start of the day reviewed and compared with the findings at the end of the day. The discussion was guided step by step to cover a range of subject about the found object and it’s context leading to a conclusion with the most important qualities of the object. The second day was to take these most important qualities and form them together into a future scenario. This story was translated into a comic and presented together with the research at the end of the day. The emphasis was on the thinking of the future context of the object rather then visualizing the object itself. In this way it was very important for the students to think and discuss the future use, surrounding and possible developments. Both days where about working together, discuss and reflect. And in this really short time create a research and future scenario (comic) as a shared project with the different disciplines that worked within the group.

The questions we provide as a general structure of the research are to enter a subject and to open a discussion on all related topics within each of the questions. After these questions we can see the interests of the group. We re-organised the results to find out what, according to the group, where the most important topics they talked about. These most important topics than where taken to form the basis of the story line for the future scenario (comic).