Todd Nicewonger

Grant Type

Post PhD Research Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Virginia Tech

Grant number

Gr. 9955

Approve Date

October 24, 2019

Project Title

Nicewonger, Todd (Virginia Tech) "Design and Sustainability: An Ethnography of the Transnational Circulation of Design Concepts and Practices "

This multi-phased ethnographic study bridges two unique sites: design schools and research institutions in Sweden where innovative, sustainable projects for Kenya are planned; and those informal settlements in Kenya where sustainable design initiatives are being or have been implemented by these Swedish institutions. Using both sets of sites this study will critically analyze how the paradigms underlining sustainable design and development operate as vehicles for reproducing social hierarchies and modes of control. As such, this project will generate timely insights into how conceptual practices and theories shape the field of sustainable design and development. This project also promises to comment more broadly on the critical role that research on design can play in the future of sustainable research and planning in the Global South.