Design as an Instrument of Social Change in Bosnia Essay

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Exposé For a master thesis at FH Joanneum Subject: Graphic design Diplomgrafikerin Catherine Rollier Topic: Design as an instrument of social change in post-war Bosnia and Herzegovina Version 1 Stand: 7.1.2013 1. Introduction 1.1 Theoretical background Design nowadays is in the deepest pores of our consumer society. It doesn’t stand any more for a simple and nice wrapping around a product; it became a personal and intimate category of our lives. We have emotions towards it and it became our identity – a part of us. Past two decades were under the sign of emotional design, where corporations cruelly managed to make consumers identify themselves with the product by sophisticated advertising. Products were bought not because of the product itself, but rather the message it communicates. A certain lifestyle is being sold, an ideal or a just concept and as Naomi Klein would say in ger book “No Logo” - we are in a state of a collective hypnosis. The main weapon used for achieving these goals is still design. 90% of our information consumed is visual, it evokes feelings, sympathy and in overall it transfers a certain message most effectively. It combination with sound and interaction the impact is complete. We consume design every day. We laugh at it; we wonder the creativity, the beauty and sometimes complain about its loudness, harassment and aggressiveness. It is, indeed, a very ubiquitous and efficient force which can shape our thoughts precisely. Where on one side we have design which is concentrated on profit accumulation, on the other side a counterbalance is emerging which asks some basic questions: Can design directly serve citizens and the society? Can it contribute to better life conditions? Can it fight discrimination and can it make world a better place? We can give that counterbalance a name: social awareness design. Being a designer is very

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