Participle in the NYT

Alice Rawsthorn pens another write-up on Participle for the New York Times. Engineering a Brighter Future focuses on the topic of social design, viewed through a UK program called Loops which “aims to help young people to become more confident, ambitious and resourceful.”

We’d wanted to help young people for some time, but the urgency came when Unicef published a study showing that the U.K. was the worst country in the Western world to grow up in,” explained Hilary Cottam, co-founder of Participle. “The government’s response was to build new youth centers and to encourage young people to avoid risk — not drinking, not getting pregnant, not doing drugs. All the research shows that locking them up in schools and youth centers doesn’t work. Youth development comes out of having lots of experiences and engaging with risk. We felt there had to be a better way.

Over the past two years Rawsthorn has helped to publicize projects from Participle, Live|work and ReD Associates in articles focused on shifting the public perception of design.

These overviews are good, but I’d really love to see some more detailed case studies on these types of projects.




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