When you need a little less
Sharing is a treasure to be rediscovered. Cities, libraries, public squares and playgrounds - it is incredible to collectively support a system that takes care of people and provides both green environments, health care and education that is accessible. With the help of technology, infrastructure, communication and modern systems of management/governance we could easily share even more and achieve greater freedom, equality and abundance in society.
Not so long ago "democratic design" revolutionised the world and the ripples on the water are slowly but surely evening out. A new age is on the rise, the age of sharing.Sharing is graceful, it is something we are taught as children because it benefits us and connects us to a social context. By sharing with others we form relationships and practice non-attachment. Practicing non-attachment is the founding principle of many belief systems and is considered the basis of meditation. By detaching from personal ownership and instead focusing on collectivism and shared responsibility, we make room for greater possibilities and freedom. By learning to share, we become more open and understanding towards other people and contexts. When people feel a sense of ownership, because something is shared with them, they become more respectful and protective of that thing. This can both be an item, a place, a relationship or even a person.
It is important that consensus around the handling of the thing that is shared is established and this needs to be negotiated and clearly communicated so that misunderstandings, misuse or vandalisation does not occur. The concept of sharing comes with fragmented ownership and the conception of possession can become quite blurred and hard to define. Therefore different regulations for sharing need to be setup, along with defined contexts and frameworks. This is where innovation, simplification, standardization and integration needs to happen. This provides opportunities for improving the status quo.
For the most part, things are not shared instantaneously but because something is used by different people over time the results become that of sharing. Sharing is mostly more efficient than not sharing and it generates more for the many. To design things for sharing requires investigating aspects such as durability, sustainability and clarity. All of these qualities are about bettering and perfecting conditions which suggests that striving for shared design makes sense, for the most part. Not everything can or should be shared and striving for shared design does not mean that it needs to be shared by everyone, all the time and be all-inclusive. Sharing can happen locally, between people with a certain interest or as part of a specific process. What shared design will result in is yet to be defined by those who pursue and practice it. STUDIO REBECCA NORBERG works with both researching, conceptualising, testing and implementing sharing, both through integration in the process and in the final product or proposal. From the work done, the studio has gathered a lot of insight, ideas and knowledge on sharing that we would love to show and discuss with you, don't feel shy to contact us to find out more.