Seminar Discussion Group 12

The home community and library

The starting point is the implosion of ethical values in European society. Communities in place may be a possible solution. By creating rich encounters we can create a resilient society that is strong enough to resist dehumanising tendencies. The systemic context is government services that are based purely on technical and financial considerations.

In this project, the library service in the form of a home library became pragmatic and relational rather than just a system.

The home library service team is extremely committed to its readers, and their relational encounters. An example being that they have intimate knowledge of their readers living conditions, such as a knowledge of their taste and a sensitivity to their socio-economic situation. The home library staff and their encounters became meaningful services beyond simply the delivery of books.

Through design visualisations, the staff make their knowledge and experiences explicit for themselves and others at the policy level. The key message communicated to the policy makers is to understand government services or other social organisational structures to encompass adult social care. The other shifts that this project encouraged were to envision the role of technology, supporting volunteers and supporting interest-based communities. The home library, by stitching the homes together through their services, can be said to support a sense of the local.

We are left with a question from our discussions: what kind of government structures or organisational encounters can become meaningful services?

Weaving People and Places Seminar
Central Saint Martins, 1 July 2016