supports the development of new graduate seminars to train students in the methods and
approaches of the public humanities. Another
will fund doctoral students to undertake their
own projects in public scholarship. And the third
places graduate students in direct collaboration
with two-year colleges in Seattle, where they are
mentored by faculty in their disciplines.
We are already seeing new curriculum being
developed in this partnership. Public scholarship
is important intellectual work, and it should be
more widely recognized by academic institutions
both in the United States and in Canada.
Ms. Arteaga is a graduate student in English and the assistant
program director for “Reimagining the Humanities PhD and
Reaching New Publics” at the Simpson Center for the Humanities
at the University of Washington in Seattle.
“Design thinking” just a buzzword
let’s get a few things straight about Tim Johnson’s
article, “The new design of thinking” (February
2016). First, “design thinking” is a buzzword
mainly promoted now by experts emerging from
business schools eager to renew the much criticized toolboxes associated with new public management and evidence-based approaches to policy development that they themselves force on
organizations as the cure to all worldly problems.
As it was the case for those two approaches,
the explanation offered by many promoters of
design thinking is mainly built on catchphrases
that only serve to convince policy-makers of the
seemingly boundless versatility of design thinking. But, in fact, there is yet no serious evaluation
of the exact impact of such an approach, short
and long term, and researchers in design are only
starting to wonder about its downfalls.
Second, I am writing this letter in English to
be sure that the author of the article catches my
drift. There are four major design departments
in Quebec and at least one in the Maritimes. In
a recent readers’ survey conducted by University
Affairs, I mentioned that in spite of the very good
overall quality of the magazine, I do feel that it is
conceived by and produced for the rest of Canada.
This article is a good demonstration of that.
Dr. Gauthier is an associate professor in the school of design,
and director of the design and society group, in the faculty of
environmental design, Université de Montréal.
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