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Un-nuances of Co-designing and co-creating: a design thinking approach within a ‘Zongo’ community in Ghana

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The paper reports on a study exploring co-designing and co-creation (collaboratively) with the main stakeholders – residents, landlords and designers– in prototyping a design system for tackling sanitation and environmental issues within a section of a deprived community in Kumasi, Ghana. The aim was to explore the benefits of including stakeholder voices in decision-making in sanitation planning; as well as analysing the contributions of stakeholders (landlords, tenants, and residents) in improving their environment through sanitation and sustainable environmental practices. Interviews, focus group discussions and ethnographic activities were employed in collecting data for the study. Even though the results indicated stakeholders (co-designers) in such collaborative (design intervention) approach will want their voices be heard in decision-making in sanitation planning and environment that will boost the self-efficacy of their sanitation. But more importantly, the study unpredictably tended to restore peace and befitting relationships, as unhealthy factions and differences between two ruling classes in the community created unsavoury attitude to insanitary conditions.

Authors: Patrick Gyamfi, Edward Appiah, Ralitsa Debrah

Additional Info

  • Topics of presentation: Design for Sustainable Materials and Energy
  • Venue: Italy

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