If Only All Great Discussions Could Happen In Bed

Blogs, Youth article written on the 09 Dec 2013

It’s the oft-posed hypothetical: who would your ideal fantasy dinner party guests be? Oxfam’s Design for Change staff, never ones for conventionality, decided to take that one step further last week and plot who they’d like to be in bed with. And then asked those inspiring change-makers to join them in a makeshift boudoir.

Add a guitar, a Yoko and John lookalike and a giant Oxfam sheet and such was the scene at Link Festival in Melbourne – a two day festival exploring design, innovation and social change hosted by Engineers Without Borders. Design for Change hosted the horizontal panel discussion and interactive workshop (known as a ‘design hack’ in cool design circles) inspired by the famous peace bed from 1969.

The 90-minute discussion invited designers and story tellers who are challenging how design can be used towards harnessing greater social change. Bed guests included

–       Livia Albeck-Ripka, the deputy editor of Dumbo Feather

–       Yoko Akama, Designer and Academic at RMIT whose work focuses on the participatory design workshops and community building

–       Benj Binks; director of the feature documentary ‘Mongolian Bling’, a film about the use of hip hop as a tool for social change

–       Phillipa Abbott, a Melbourne-based designer who has worked both in Australia and abroad whose work values community building and knowledge sharing through design.

And as no John Lennon reenactment would be complete without some good ol’ Beatles tunes, the discussion wrapped up with a sing in before breaking off for a design hack – basically a whole lotta participants using their various backgrounds and skills to come up with creative solutions to re-inspire the Australian public in climate change.

People were tasked with producing a short instagram video on the spot. You can check out what they came up with by searching #hackclimatechange on instagram. You can even do it lying down…