Global design is a recent phenomenon that can be understood as design targeted at a global audience, which aims to be exhibited and consumed by different cultures. Hence, a key question is: how can designers globalize design in an ethical manner without giving rise to breakdowns in communication and threatening cultural diversity? Although some authors argue that it is just not possible to globalize visual communication, it is improbable that globalization and global design will vanish. Therefore, we are not facing a question of whether or not to produce global design, but of how we should carry out global design in a professional and ethical manner. Overall, this paper advances a conceptual understanding of global design and the different forms and categories it embodies: standard, multicultural and localisation. Finally, it concludes by suggesting possible approaches communication designers might pursue in acting globally, aiming to define future directions for more professional and ethical global graphic design practice.
About Susana Barreto
Susana Barreto is a design educator and researcher. Having worked and lived in London and Macau for fifteen years, Susana is now living in Porto where she holds a position at the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Porto where she is a Deputy Course Director of the PhD in Design, which has been Granted Excellence Status by The Foundation for Science and Technology fct.pt. Susana is also a Research Associate at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts, London where she gained her PhD and Postdoc. In 2012 Susana has been appointed a member of the evaluation panel of the Grants and Fellowships of design, urbanism and architecture for the National Foundation for Science and Technology.
Susana's research interests are focused around the role of culture in graphic communication, cross-cultural design, image globalization, visual methods and design ethics.
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