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Conversation Labs

Monthly online discussions and networking are hosted by ACD members and the participative sessions will be written up, shared and published within our global community.

These sessions are usually hosted via Zoom. There will be an introduction by our chair, there is a new theme or question.

Conversation Lab 10

Language and Place

Inspired by the presence of Indigenous Peoples in Glasgow for COP26, join us for a conversation lab to explore how ‘talks’, words, sounds, and language can be the keystone of regenerative and collaborative design processes.


How do we re-integrate ourselves with a sense of place through the choice of language we use? 

Chaired by Kara de los Reyes

November 2021

Conversation Lab 9

Sensory Design Part 2 - Process and Practice

Exploring practical approaches to sensory design, and ways to apply it to live projects.

Read the summary blog post.

Chaired by Nataly Raab

October 2021

Conversation Lab 8

Sensory Design

They say we have five senses. But we know now that these go beyond sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste. We can sense time, in the changing of the seasons. The change of energy in the room, the moods of people around us. How do we address multiple senses to design inclusive and welcoming spaces that support diversity?

Our senses go beyond our bodies, into the spaces that we inhabit and move through. Let's explore together how sensory design can become part of everyday design practice.

Read the summary blog post.

Chaired by Nataly Raab

September 2021

Conversation Lab 7

Embedding feminine values of equity and inclusivity in participatory design

We will be exploring together the more feminine values of equity and inclusivity as part of a public participation or co-design process, to create better neighbourhoods, more democratic design process and long-term stewardship.

The focus will be on visibility, knowledge gathering, right to freely enjoy cities, ownership, collective and individual experiences, differences and diversity.

Chaired by Dr Noha Nasser

July 2021

Conversation Lab 6

Climate Action Urban Thinkers


This is an open space to share, learn and brainstorm how grass-roots level involvement in co-designing climate actions supports the message 'THE MORE PEOPLE ACT, THE BIGGER THE IMPACT', in preparation for 'UN Climate Change Conference COP 26' in November and the World Urban Campaign 'Urban Thinkers Campus' programme.

Samantha Suppiah was our guest speaker, who shared her experience in working between Global N / S initiatives with community engagement tensions, and the barriers she encounters, especially in creating interventions to urban spaces that will respond to climate change.

Read the summary blog post.

Chaired by Kara de los Reyes

June 2021

Conversation Lab 5

Tensions and decision making


In this lab, we will be looking at sticky issues, sharing experiences, and discussing ways to progress through the challenging points of collaborative design.

Chaired by Nataly Raab

Link to Miro board

Read the event summary

April 2021

Conversation Lab 4

What is collaborative design?

The Association of Collaborative Design is continually experimenting with different formats for our Conversation Labs.

The upcoming Lab is an opportunity to network and collaboratively explore what co-design is to you? There are no right or wrong answers as we open our minds to our diverse understandings in an informal, friendly and safe setting.

Chaired by Dr Kate Langham

Link to Miro board

March 2021

Conversation Lab 3

How can co-design provide greater opportunities for creative community engagement?

The lab is an opportunity to connect, network and discuss.

It links to a three-year ‘Creative Makerspaces’ project with The Glass House, in collaboration with Brunel University London and Tongji University in Shanghai. One of the core approaches in this project is collaborative workshops to bring people together to explore ambitions for spaces and create bilingual co-design resources for community groups and practitioners.

Chaired by Dr Kate Langham and Dr Noha Nasser

Link to  article here 

Miro board

February 2021

Conversation Lab 2

How can digital tools provide greater opportunities for inclusive community engagement?

In September, the ACD team is speaking at a workshop all about digital community engagement, hosted by the Design Council. We shall also be learning about the digital practices of other panel members, as well as the audience. The insights shared at the workshop will act as the springboard for this Conversation Lab; exploring how digital tools can be harnessed to support inclusive community engagement.

Chaired by Sarah Jones-Morris

Link to Jamboard

October 2020

Conversation Lab 1

Is the global pandemic an opportunity to rethink public participation?

You will explore specific themes in small, friendly groups, with a focus on open discussion and ideas generation. 

An article by Communities by Design (June 2020) It’s Time to Build a Nation of Citizen Urbanists by Joel Mills of AIA Communities by Design will inform discussions. The paper discusses the global pandemic as an opportunity to instil a more democratic, inclusive co-design process that places people as the foundations of our cities. The article provides a starting point to facilitate conversation and sharing of ideas surrounding the future of public participation.

Chaired by Dr Noha Nasser

Link to Jamboard

September 2020

Conversation Lab 5
Conversation Lab 4
Conversation Lab 3
Conversation Lab 2
Conversation Lab 1
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