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6th August 2013, 9:03am
Transatlantic challenge to unite international design community
Columbia College, Chicago Industry-leading designers and educators from around the world will connect for a pioneering transatlantic design workshop that will see participants working interactively with team members 4,000 miles away.

Hosted by the University of Lincoln in the UK and the Design Learning Network in the USA, the Chicago-Lincoln Design Learning Challenge is the first of its kind, and will offer 120 designers and educationalists a unique opportunity to work with their international peers in real time through Skype.

The event, led by Doris Wells-Papanek, Director of the Design Learning Network and David Bramston, Principal Lecturer at the University of Lincoln’s School of Art and Design, will provide a unique platform for the international design community to share ideas and experiences.

The Chicago-Lincoln Design Learning Challenge will take place on Saturday 24 August 2013, from 3pm – 8pm GMT. It will be hosted in the award-winning Architecture Building at the University of Lincoln, where participating designers will link up with their counterparts at Columbia College Chicago.

The challenge will be co-facilitated by practitioners from the Industrial Designers Society of America’s 2013 International Conference, which will take place simultaneously in Chicago.

Speaking ahead of the challenge, David Bramston said: “We are absolutely delighted to be working with Doris and the Design Learning Network on this project. We share a vision of creating effective and sustainable links between designers and educational institutions on a global scale, and we hope this will encourage the community to embrace new forms of communication.

“This first Chicago-Lincoln Design Learning Challenge offers an exclusive opportunity to engage in meaningful design learning experiences with peers across the other side of the world. We are confident that the event will be a great success, and here at the University of Lincoln’s School of Art and Design where innovation is key, we look forward to expanding our network with similar events in the future.”

Throughout the Design Learning Challenge, 60 designers and educationalists in Lincoln and 60 in Chicago will form international teams. They will respond to a live brief set by Doris and David, addressing important issues of sustainability and environmental conservation linked to the BBC documentary, Who Killed the Honeybee?

Doris Wells-Papanek said: “The primary aim of the Design Learning Network is to offer students all over the world the opportunity to develop their capacity for design, to tap into their sense of curiosity and become aware of when they are making good choices – or not! Using design as pedagogy, we invite educators of multiple subjects to facilitate a highly interactive and collaborative learning process, grounded in critical and creative inquiry.”

For the University of Lincoln, the event will build on existing links with design education across America. Out of 59 student chapters of the Industrial Designers Society of America, the University of Lincoln is the only one outside of the USA.

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