WANG Shisi hails from Wuhan, China. She entered the PhD program in the School of Design at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2015. She earned her Masters of Design Science from Chonbuk National University, South Korea in 2009. She earned her Bachelor of Arts at Wuhan University of Technology in 2007. During her senior year there, she was sponsored by the South Korean government to study independent designers’ brands in South Korea. She has six-year work experience in her field. In addition, she has taught editorial design, logo deign, CIS, packaging design, typographic design and computer-aided design at the college level. She has also worked as a Design Director in a well-known designer boutique. Her experience has helped her gain a special insight into the relationship between Chinese traditional visual elements and the design of e-commerce materials. She believes Chinese traditional culture can be a rich source of creative ideas for Chinese background designers.
Creating the Online Images of Cities Populated with Chinese Ethnic Groups: Taking Tibetan Cities as an Example
Dr. Sandy Ng (Chief Supervisor)
Prof. Ilpo Koskinen (External Co-supervisor)
About the Research
The year 2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Tibet Autonomous Region. During these 50 years Tibet’s cities, especially Lhasa, have been moving forward with modernization. Its GDP has increased more rapidly than any other province. Confronted with the increasing competition between cities, how can Tibetan cities stand out? How can they attract more investment, talent, and tourists? Most importantly, how can they preserve Tibet's own culture in the midst of globalization? One solution to these problems may be city branding design.
City image, a visual reflection of a city, is part of city branding. City branding is a research branch of place branding which is also considered as an interdisciplinary science combined with social sciences, political sciences, humanities, communication, marketing and international relations. The conceptualization of the city as a brand builds upon Aaker’s (1996) definition of a brand as a ‘multidimensional construct, consisting of functional, emotional, relational and strategic elements that collectively generate a unique set of associations in the public mind’. After him came more scholars interested in place branding, including Raymond Miller, Simon Anholt, Keith Dinnie and so on. Originally, these scholars focused their attention more on nation branding. Later, many of them began to shift their attention from nation branding to city branding. They think if a country wants to be a strong ‘umbrella’ brand, city branding should be, of course, the rib of the umbrella.
The purpose of this research is to find methods to extract the unique characteristics of Lhasa. These methods combined with the Internet technology, will be possible to create an online-based design of Lhasa's city image. A comprehensive survey will be done of the Lhasa citizens from both historical and modern perspectives with the purpose of finding evidence embodied with Tibetan spirit, finally resulting in setting up a database for Tibetan Culture.
The project will make the academic research on city branding more complete because it will focus on the study of minor city branding that was somehow neglected by the design field in the past when the study of city branding was only done in mega cities or developed cities.