The 48 Hour Inclusive Design Challenge was held in the run-up to the 2008 Beijing Paralympics. It was a major event in the Accessible Cities project developed by the British Council China and East Asia region and a celebration of the 60th anniversary of the British Council in Hong Kong. It involved all of the British Council’s offices in the East Asia region.
Six inter-disciplinary teams of designers from Hong Kong, mainland China, Korea, New Zealand, Taiwan and the Asean region were led by veterans of the DBA Inclusive Design Challenge and alumni from the Helen Hamlyn Research Associates programme. Each team was paired with a disabled design partner from Hong Kong, Beijing and Chongqing. The event was supported by local disability networks, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, the Hong Kong Designer’s Association (HKDA) and the major sponsor was Hong Kong’s Innovation and Technology Commission.
Over a two-day period the teams worked at Cyberport, Hong Kong’s digital hub. They presented their design solutions to an invited audience at a public event on 30 August at Innocentre, home of the HKDA where the keynote speaker and patron was Victor Lo, Chair of HKDA. Two well know designers - graphic designer Stanley Wong Ping Pui and the design critic and illustrator Craig Au Yeng Ying Chai followed the Challenge’s progress as it unfolded over the 48 hours of the Challenge.
The teams were asked to design an inclusive and aspirational product, service, environment, communication or communication campaign that deliberately included the need and aspirations of their design partner with a focus on mainstreaming their everyday life. The theme the teams addressed was Independent Urban Lives in the area of: work; mobility; leisure; communication and the home.
The results were decided by audience vote. The Best Idea went to Team 1 from Hong Kong and Guangzhou, led by Matthew White and Ng Fan of Saatchi & Saatchi, for their MPowerStyxx chopstick mouse. The Best Presentation prize went to Team 6 from the Asean region, led by Guy Robinson of Sprout Design.