This is the central question posed by Fifty Years of Failures, a research project that will run throughout the DRS2016 conference as one of the three recipients of the 50th Anniversary DRS grant.  

50 years is half a century. In a sense it’s a crossroads, where we–not unlike the Ancient Roman god Janus–look simultaneously towards the past and the future. In this spirit, addressing past failures head on is essentially about anticipating and co-creating the future of the design discipline. 

Importantly, this is something we need to do together. 

Prior to the anniversary conference we’ve been posing the above question to a range of different researchers, who all share some kind of affiliation with the DRS. Amazed with the highly different responses we have received so far, we’re now really excited to invite all conference participants to join the discussion by voicing their own reflections on past failure and future success within our field.

The project is part of the ongoing PhD research of Søren Rosenbak (Umeå Institute of Design). Fifty Years of Failures in Brighton is Søren Rosenbak, Giovanni Marmont and Marije de Haas.