Utilize the Technology
One senses that in this era, companies or organizations attempting to create new value should begin by asking questions. Imagine the process of designing an office. Logical approaches—such as quantifying productivity based on the minimum space per person—often only lead to the same kinds of solutions. The office may end up being efficient, but this approach prevents us from offering fresh experiences or creative value. Skilled designers take a different approach. Their thinking begins with questions: What's working all About, anyway? or What latent needs do we have About where we work? This trait of good designers is what society itself needs today.
Change the Workstyle
Essentially, how we work can be viewed as a matter of what style we adopt for the interactions between individuals and society—how we engage with each other. We are constantly going through new ways of living and working, as a variety of work styles emerge and eventually decline in popularity. But with ongoing debate on matters of work style reform or work-life balance inevitably revolving around time and money, based on traditional ways of working, one gets the impression that this talk is behind the times and the changes around us. As many people and companies continue struggling to find ideal ways to work, what is needed may be the power of good design to suggest role models that demonstrate how the ties between individuals and society—the relationships we build—can bring us happiness.
Improve the General Learning
Recent years have seen greater interest in two approaches to educational design for active learning. In one approach, ways of studying are expanded through e-learning and other applications of IT. In the other, learning opportunities are improved through the design of social environments, accounting for space, facilitation, and arrangements to serve students of all ages. This year's award program also seems to have happened at a time when people began to realize how well artificial intelligence is suited to this active learning, now that AI-driven products and projects are materializing around us.
Cultivate the Locality
Quite a few people seem to have sensed the limits of driving the economy through cycles of mass production and mass consumption, as promoted in Japan for years. Even if our quest for more can be satisfied under favorable economic conditions, this seems less likely at the present. In contrast, as we share life with other members of a community or area and pursue meaningful relationships, we find value in how these relationships endure over time. The more time we invest, the more valuable these ties become to us. Many believe that localities are essential as a wellspring that helps to satisfy our desire for these relationships that bear fruit over time. Here and there, this thinking is already becoming established. Increasingly, we see examples of design which, in the spirit of nurturing localities, creates opportunities or arrangements to satisfy our desire for connectedness and weaves together enriching elements.
Reform the Social Infrastructure
The supportive role of social infrastructure is clear from infra- (meaning "below" or "beneath"), and this narrow, traditional sense of the expression may call to mind structures such as bridges or train systems. More advanced infrastructure raises standards of living, and at another key stage, these arrangements keep society and everyday life running smoothly, but each phase is intended to benefit society as a whole.
Rediscover the Values of Life
The things that contribute to quality of life are not extravagant. Good examples are the familiar, everyday things we can rely on to make life better. In Sweden, a friendly coffee break called a fika draws people together, even at work, for a chat and a snack. A fika is not fancy, but anyone might enjoy this chance to mingle. Thus, a suitable tray for the sweets can be viewed as emblematic of a good life. Even if these tangibles or intangibles are not so special, they do make life a little better.
Depict the Convivial Society
Symbiotic relationships can be cooperative (mutualistic), competitive, or otherwise. To understand how to observe such biological relationships, I think it is directly applicable to observe stakeholders in a corporate relationship. Corporate marketing usually only shows the role of consumers, but there are stakeholders in a broader symbiotic relationship. Fewer people survive when the competitive relationships of a consumer society intensify. Instead of this, finding value in the stakeholders left behind or somehow saving them can be described as a key theme in business and contemporary society at large. In other words, only by rebuilding traditional relationships and considering arrangements where a variety of stakeholders support each other can we take on design for a society in mutualistic symbiosis.