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Design Education in India

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The current education system of the country unable to handle the population boom is making colleges succesful just because of the number of students applying for each seat rather than the quality of education imparted by them. This glaring gap leads us to realize that the number of design schools in India is in mere two digits. From social to economic, design can solve problems at all levels. Thus, the exceeding number of applications for the existing seats in the Design schools as well as the focus on development in the country define the opportunity to create an institution solely for design.

University education in India is dominated by vertical specializations with little connect between the various disciplines. The emphasis has been on development of knowledge resources and capability within each domain of study. However, it is seen that to solve real world problems and to tap on emerging opportunities, there is a need for interdisciplinary and trans-cultural approach. It is here that many educators across disciplines are turning to Design and Design Thinking. These new attitudes and capabilities to various domains of specializations within an educational setting is the need of the hour. These new emerging Master level programs permit interdisciplinary, industry centric education that make students a Jack of all and a Master of one discipline.

Social/Cultural Design programs define the next level of design pedagogy. In a developing nation like India, various sectors such as healthcare, urbanization, rural development, education, mobility, agriculture and many more provide tremendous scope for design intervention at various levels. These unique issues however, have to be addressed keeping in mind the various contexts. All eyes are set on the future of the world’s 33% population that resides in India. It is aptly termed as the “emerging market”. A majority of this population consists of people in rural areas. Therefore, “the bottom of the pyramid” represents the fastest growing new markets favorable for great entrepreneurial opportunities that can be found amongst billions of underprivileged people.

Problems like the farmers markets, their systems and the infrastructure they need, are all dependent on design solutions. One has to bring in the required research, apply an analytical mind and bring together people from multiple disciplines to solve these complex yet everyday issues that can have a fundamental impact on the country’s economic landscape. These are the areas where design thinking can be applied to fetch immediate results and enhance the image of design and the power of social innovation.

The Design Village (TDV) has been conceived to provide an international, inter-disciplinary, industry -centric platform for design. In order to enhance the design quotient of the country, TDV has glocal (International and Indian faculty) partners as institutes & centres which form a pool of faculty and students that work closely with industries and professionals. The courses in Graphics & interior architecture have been developed by L’Ecole de design Nantes Atlantique, France.

Certainly, design education will lead the change and will be instrumental in increasing the quality of life. To understand and respond to social responsibilities that are pertinent to local and global communities, a multi-‐disciplinary and collaborative approach needs to be imbibed that will enhance the country’s ability to innovate and solve its problems.

 

 

 

 

 

Siddharth Bathla

Academic Head

The Design Village

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