Ideas for Humanity: a Cookbook for Planetary Health Past Event

Presented by RMIT / School of Design / Global Design Studio

The Global Design Studio (GDS) is an online intensive project that introduces students and staff from different Higher Education Institutions to transnational and transdisciplinary practices and collaboration, situated in pluralistic and global ways of designing together whilst exploring subject-driven opportunities for online learning.

This year 70 students and 8 staff from three different institutions (UAL/LCC, RMIT and Elisava) worked together on Ideas for Humanity, A Cookbook for Planetary Health. 

Outcomes of the design sprint will be exhibited online at the project’s website, launching on Friday 26 March.

This the third iteration of GDS, and this year the Studio continued to address non-trivial issues that connect participants in different parts of the world through a concern for planetary health and more than simply survival. We looked at the documented risks to our interconnected ecologies and collectively aimed to offer more than preventative measures – instead looking to positive futures made possible through knowledge sharing and design as a means of action.

In 2019, the Anthropocene Working group, made up of geologists, climate scientists and ecologists voted on the naming of a new epoch (geological time): The Anthropocene. It is proposed that the anthropocene is defined by and begins when human activities start to have a significant global impact on Earth’s ecosystems to the extent where human activity is altering the planets make up (geology). Signifiers for the alteration are for example the presence of radioactive isotopes released by atomic bombs, carbon dioxide, concrete and aluminium manufacture and plastic production and use. These human practices cause severe climate change and are threatening biodiversity.

The planetary shift brings consequences for all of us and as designers we have a responsibility to act, propose, challenge and share. Over the period of two weeks students and staff collaboratively worked together on the Planetary Health Cookbook, populated with field guides, advise, hacks, tips, tutorials, instruction sets, individual stories, coping mechanisms, training exercises, manifestos and collective actions; recipes for people to act individually or collectively.

Ideas for Humanity: a Cookbook for Planetary Health

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Fri 26 Mar


RMIT Building 14, 414-418 Swanston St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia