dISCUSSIONS

  • Assignment 1: Blackboard Reflection and Discussion

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Please see the attached document for assignment instructions and grading criteria. Please read this before proceeding with the following links.

Video: The Route to a Sustainable Future

For some context of the world in which we geodesign, please watch this TED Talk “The Route to a Sustainable Future” by Alex Steffan (18 minutes). As you watch, consider the following:

  • What are some of the “major flaws” and/or challenges our society faces?
  • What are some of the common threads between the solutions Steffan said he was looking for and what geodesign aims to do?
  • What are examples from his talk of design that promotes life?
  • What statistics or ideas were most suprising?
  • Do you agree that the consequences of our current trajectory are unthinkable and the solutions are unimaginable?

Discussion 1: The Route to A Sustainable Future

After watching Alex Steffen’s TED Talk, write a reflection addressing some or all of the following questions. After submitting your reflection, please read your colleagues’ reflections and use comments to discuss.

  • What are some of the common threads between the solutions Steffan said he was looking for and what geodesign aims to do?
  • What are examples from his talk of design that promotes life?
  • What statistics or ideas were most surprising?
  • Do you agree that the consequences of our current trajectory are unthinkable and the solutions are unimaginable?

This link should take you to the forum. Otherwise, look for the Module 1, Discussion 1 Forum. Click the Create Thread button to write your reflection.

Video: Cradle to Cradle Design

Please watch this TED Talk by William McDonough titled “Cradle to Cradle Design” (20 minutes). There are some parts of the talk that venture into the political, but much of the talk is focused on design. It addresses some of the value-based criteria that can inform design and the idea that there is an ethic of design related to life. As you watch, consider the following:

  • What are some of these social values and ethical considerations for design he mentions? Do you agree that these are valid considerations in the design process? What do you disagree with?
  • What spatial factors, science and/or value based, were considered in the design of the Chinese city at the end of the video? Do you think this design will work?
  • What is meant by “Cradle to Cradle” design?

Discussion 2: Cradle to Cradle Design

After watching the TED Talk by William McDonough titled “Cradle to Cradle Design”, write a reflection addressing the following questions. After submitting your reflection, please read your colleagues’ reflections and use comments to discuss.

  • What are some of these social values and ethical considerations for design he mentions?
  • Do you agree that these are valid considerations in the design process?
  • What do you disagree with?
  • Do you think the design for the Chinese city will work? What assumptions are there?
  • Do you think there are cradle to cradle solutions for every product and process?

This link should take you to the forum. Click the Create Thread button to begin your reflection. After submitting your thread, you will be able to read and comment on others.

Video: Geodesign through the Lens of Culture and Resource Constraints

Mark Reiner, owner of Non Sequitur, discusses using geodesign to address both the challenges and opportunities for innovation when constraints-based engineering is used to solve problems in the developing world. His talk includes important points about how design assumptions, expectations, and paradigms are not universal. (26 minutes)

  • What does Reiner mean by non sequiturs and paradigms? You may want to look up these terms if you are not familiar with them.
  • Two seemingly contradictory approaches to design have been discussed in these videos. This video appears to focus more on using constraints (limitations) to find good design. William McDonough discussed how a focus on abundance (taking advantage of resources and processes that are abundant) and growth can faciliate good design. Are these ideas (constraints vs. abundance) really opposed to one another? What might you risk by focusing too much on constraints or too much on abundance?
  • Despite the many constraints, what was abundant in Kigali, Rwanda?

Discussion 3: Geodesign through the Lens of Culture and Resource Constraints

Two seemingly contradictory approaches to design have been discussed in these videos. This most recent video appears to focus more on using constraints (limitations) to find good design. William McDonough discussed how a focus on abundance (taking advantage of resources and processes that are abundant) and growth can faciliate good design. Write a reflection and discuss the following questions:

  • Are these ideas (constraints vs. abundance) really opposed to one another?
  • What might you risk by focusing too much on constraints or too much on abundance?
  • Can you think of other situations in which contraints and/or abudance were not adequately considered and it led to poor design? Or perhaps inaccurate assumptions were made about constraints or abundance?

This link should take you there. Click Create Thread to begin your reflection. Once your reflection is submitted, you will be able to read and comment on others.

2015 Geodesign Summit Welcome and Opening Remarks

Tom Fisher from the University of Minnesota and Jack Dangermond, founder and president of Esri, open the 2015 Geodesign Summit. This talk  highlights the role of technology in Geodesign, specifically GIS and the Internet/web. It also previews some of the recent advancements in geodesign tools, some of which we will use in this course. (30 minutes)

Discussion 4: Geodesign Summit Opening

Please write one final reflection for this module on one of the following three questions:

  • Jack Dangermond asks attendees “Why are you here?” McDonough also mentioned how design is the first signal of intention. Why are you here in this course? What motivates your interest in GIS and geodesign? What are you intentions with your GIS career?
  • The relationship of geodesign to the environment, natural resources, and urban and regional planning are fairly intuitive, but what about business? How does geodesign or could geodesign apply to business?
  • The relationship of geodesign to the environment, natural resources, and urban and regional planning are fairly intuitive, but what about emergency management? How does geodesign or could geodesign apply to emergency management?

This link should take you to the forum. Click Create Thread to start your reflection.

 

Read Chapter 2 from the book Geodesign: Case Studies in Regional and Urban Planning.

After reading Chapter 2 (Empowering the People), visit http://priorityplaces.ashevillenc.gov and explore the application (It has changed some since the book was written. Be sure to click on the map to explore the reporting tool). How does this tool incorporate geodesign? What works well? What would you improve? Who are some likely end-users of this application? Follow this link to the forum to discuss.

Module 2, Discussion 2: Fighting Climate Change

After reading Chapter 3, please follow this link to discuss the following:

This study involved many stakeholders with the hopeful description of “15 towns and numerous villages that would set aside differences and work together to protect the greater whole.” What do you think some of these differences are? What might be some of the science-based and value-based criteria that participants would consider as they evaluate planning scenarios? Would these be criteria be mutually agreed upon or would there be differences?

 

Module 2, Discussion 3: Where the Wild Things Roam

Read Chapter 4, and then follow this link to reply to the following:

In your own words, describe how this project incorporated (or did not incorporate) the six planning questions (aka models) of the geodesign framework. (See page 11 for a framework refresher.)

 

Module 2, Discussion 4: Singapore’s Sustainable Development

Read chapter 5, and then follow this link to discuss the following:

In one of the module 1 videos, recognizing constraints was identified as part of a planning process. What constraints were the stakeholders considering in this planning project? What about abundant resources or opportunities for growth? Were they considered?

 

Module 2, Discussion 5: Building Smart from the Ground Up

Read Chapter 6, and then following this link to discuss the following:

The importance of data and data models is highlighted in this case study. What would be some of the important considerations regarding data creation, storage, and maintenance as part of a geodesign workflow like this?

 

Module 2, Discussion 6: Red Fields into Green Fields

Read Chapter 8, Red Fields into Green Fields. Then follow this link to discuss the process used to select green field development locations. Summarize the process used to prioritize the 138 red field sites for green field development. Can you think of modifications to the process that might be more effective or lead to different results?

 

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