Design brief?

Conventionally we designers – or any of us who challenges to solve any problem – start working by receiving a brief from client in one way or the other. Often we find ourselves scratching our heads asking, “Is this really what we should do for what our client want?”.

while putting a great deal of effort downstream to devise affirmative answers to the question. But, what if the problems were not framed properly? What if the problem was challenging the symptom of a problem not the source of the symptom?

Design brief in-between upstream and downstream of design process, attribution: Alastair Fuad-Luke (CC BY-SA 3.0)

If we consider a design solution to be a result of consecutive decision making, we can say that the work of design has started already in creating a design brief. A brief is a comprehensive written document for a project developed in concert by a person or a team representing the need for solution and the designer and focused on the desired results of work – not aesthetics.

So what if I get a project from a government to solve the problem of beef production and consumption? The first thing I would do is to receive a design brief, deconstruct it, and reconstruct. In doing so, I would meet as many experts as possible, and collect as much information as possible. Then, I would set up some directions, not definitive ones but ideas for further investigation.

These are what exactly I have done. And here are the result in video and newspaper formats.