In Medium Design everyone is a designer. But design inverts the typical focus on object over field, to work on the medium—the matrix space between objects, events and ideological declarations. And it disrupts some habitual modern approaches to the world’s intractable dilemmas—from climate cataclysm to inequality to concentrations of authoritarian power. In a series of case studies dealing with everything from automation and migration to explosive urban growth and atmospheric changes, Medium Design offers spatial tools for innovation and global decision-making to challenge the authority of more familiar legal or economic declarations.
From this perspective, solutions are mistakes and ideologies are unreliable markers. Rather than the modern desire for the new, designers find more sophistication in relationships between emergent and incumbent technologies. Encouraging entanglement, medium design does not try to eliminate problems but rather put them together in productive combinations. And, special interludes puzzle over bullet-proof powers, a Kubrick movie, ISIS recruits, literary characters, and iconic activists in the hopes of outwitting political deadlocks and offering forms of activism for modulating power and temperament in organizations of all kinds.