As designers, how do we relate to the structural precariousness of everyday life, to the cuts to culture and welfare, to the lack of social protection and support as workers? How are we reacting to an educational system that forms “industry-ready” creative subjects? How aware are we, as producers of knowledge and languages, of being a fundamental component of the current economic system?
The investigation Designers’ Inquiry takes as a starting point both questions like these and a series of difficulties in contemporary society that brought us to desire a radical change for our lives. The inquiry can thus be seen as an attempt to address these questions and desires: on the one hand, by capturing the conditions of life and work of designers in Italy, and, on the other hand, by initiating a dialogue as well as a critical reflection on the profession itself.
Influenced by the model of co-research, the 78 questions elaborated in theDesigners’ Inquiry tried to involve the participants in a reflection on their own condition, thereby opening the path for possible cooperations and common struggles. A first “collective step” had already been taken in the stages following the collection of the responses: the evaluation of the data and their conceptual, visual and verbal elaboration have been developed publicly through workshops at which a diversity of designers interested in the project participated. The long-term objective of Designers’ Inquiry is to continue to produce tools of analysis, but above all tools for shared actions that aim at intervening in the present state of reality.