Quantum & Analogy partnered up to create and run two workshops during Singapore Design Week called Designing for Urban Loneliness.
Students and researchers discussed how we are living in a world with unprecedented levels of uncertainty & volatility; politically, socially, ecologically & technologically. Chaos and order are perennial states in our world, but participants felt like we are in the former state rather than later. Akshay Mathur from Quantum led the group in immersion exercises to explore the world of our protagonist – Tina – a young woman living in Shanghai. They explored her successful life ‘on paper’ and how that was at odds with her daily existence as a way to fully understand her world and be able to empathise with her in order to solve for loneliness.Many felt the human response in this case was one of vulnerability, more specifically emotional vulnerability, signified by outbursts on social media and the inability to communicate openly and honestly online. The groups also discussed the transitionary moments in people’s lives that link to a physical moment when loneliness is at its highest point, such as finishing school, starting university, moving city and starting a new job.
The workshops explored the challenges and opportunities when applying a design thinking process to reduce loneliness and isolation and looked at how design thinking tools and methods can be adapted to this domain.