"design" at the WEF in Davos

The IHT reports on a discussion about design at the WEF last week in Davos. It lists some of the themes of interest there:

"Alice Rawsthorn: designers will devote more time and energy to the underprivileged majority, the 90 percent of the world's population who can't afford basic products and services. (...) Another theme was dematerialization. Rather than creating new things, designers will also strive to make existing products disappear, often by integrating them into digital devices (...) guiltless consumption. At a time when none of us can ignore the environmental and ethical consequences of the things we buy, an essential element of "good design" is feeling free from guilt about how they were designed, made, sold and will eventually be disposed of.

Paola Antonelli: 3D printing, the extraordinarily precise rapid manufacturing processes now being developed by companies like Materialise in Belgium. (...) yearning for privacy - or Existenzmaximum, as she calls it - will be an increasingly important issue for designers in the future. (...) the potential for design to translate advances in science and technology into things we need or want. Recent developments in bioengineering and the cognitive sciences have tremendous potential, but need to be applied intelligently

Hilary Cottam: "design as a political force - the ways in which a design approach has real power to address the big social issues of our time." She advocated using design to encourage people to change their behavior. (...) to develop new ways of tackling social problems through mass collaboration (...) the role of design in policy making, arguing that designers are better equipped than politicians to understand the ambiguities and contradictions of daily life.

John Maeda: the moral responsibility of designers. He stressed the importance of transparency in design, and of extending the participatory "open source" development process now popular in software design to other sector (...) simplicity, and its importance at a time when our lives are increasingly complicated, often unnecessarily so (...) the importance of appreciating the beauty of the everyday objects and places that are often taken for granted.

Why do I blog this some interesting trends and insight spotted there, although very general. It sorts of show where the emphasis is located in this crowd (no one mentioned critical design?).