As part of the XRCE's 20th anniversary events. the centre run a series of distinguished speaker seminars. 

Seminar: Envisioning the collaborative work of the future: spaces, tools, experiences; from user observation to design strategies

Date / Time: 27th September 2013 at 3:00 PM. 

Speaker: Marco Susani

Marco Susani is a design consultant based in Chicago. He is co-founder and partner of Koz Susani Design, where he is responsible of the disciplines of Experience Design, Interaction Design and Strategic Design. Among his recent projects are a concept for the office space of the future, an Experience Vision for Allstate, second largest insurance company in USA, the Experience Design of NextTV, and a 'cloud-TV' tablet app with MIT MediaLab in USA. His main interest is in combining high technology with emotional design, aesthetic sensibility with strategic thinking, and to use his design vision to drive toward a more human future.

He designed for companies like Motorola, Philips, Panasonic, Seiko, Olivetti, 3M, NTT Japan, Zumtobel, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Tokyo Gas, Toshiba, Apple, Logitech, Nestle', Unilever, Telecom Italia, Mediaset, bTicino, Fontana Arte. He established the Interaction Design course at Domus Academy in Milan, has been on the advisory board of Domus Academy, of the Interaction Design Institute in Ivrea, Italy, and of the New School of Design in San Diego, has been Visiting Professor and External Examiner at the Royal College of Art in London, and Professor of New Media at the University of Siena's Department of Communication Science. He is co-author of several books and regularly gives keynote speeches, lectures and seminars.

Abstract: The work environment seems to have lost its ability to innovate. Most of the innovation introduced in work practices in the last 10 years were actually developed, launched and tested in the consumer environment. Mobile devices, operating systems, and interaction paradigms were born in the consumer space and only later have ‘invaded’ the work place. New social practices like grassroot collaboration and social networking also developed in the ‘everyday life’ and are now pervading the work environment.

The work environment, the tools used, even the architectural space of the office, didn’t change as much as it was expected, in spite of the large amount of ethnographic analysis, and of qualitative and quantitative research that revealed major transformations in the work practices. It may be worth questioning why the ‘circle of seduction’, the virtuous cycle that links new desires with new solutions to fulfill them, has worked so well in the consumer space and struggles to show results in the work market.

An answer can come from better understanding some of the most effective models of innovation, and recognizing the importance of developing future visions and scenarios to anticipate solutions, prototype them, and test them. I will present examples of potential opportunities of innovation related to the collaborative work-place, in three different domains: 1. The space of collaboration, a hybrid physical/digital space that catalyses collaboration; 2. Tools for collaboration, a multiplicity of interactions to manage both artifacts and relationships; 3. Experiences, high level ecosystems to support the ‘collaborative organism’ in all its aspects, from memory to knowledge sharing to future planning.