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Can design save us? - podcast

Can design save us?

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Welcome to Can design save us?, a series exploring design as a pioneering force for good. We dive into the most pressing problems of our time and meet people using design to solve them. We explore the good, the bad, the complex and the controversial.

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Episode 15: The magic of mushrooms
2/11 2021

Episode 15: The magic of mushrooms

Beyond soulful dishes to psychedelics, mushrooms and their root systems, known as mycelium, are proving to be critical to our survival. And London-based studio BIOHM is tapping into their true potential. This month, we talk to Director of Design Oksana Bondar about BIOHM’s mission to revolutionise the built world. She shares what it’s like designing with living organisms, how her early kitchen experiments led to a career in sustainability, and why she believes we’re just scratching the surface when it comes to truly symbiotic design. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: Undecided with Matt Ferrell (YouTube), Vox. / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 [https://open.spotify.com/episode/6szkNMLZDjQi4KTpaEgWwc?si=3b0a08188e36447c] / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don't forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

42m
Episode 14: Oui! to women's health
4/10 2021

Episode 14: Oui! to women's health

More than 922 million women worldwide use contraceptives, yet the area has seen limited innovation. We sit down with Cirqle Biomedical, the Danish company behind the world’s first hormone-free contraceptive. OUI, a tiny clear capsule, works just a few minutes after insertion. Design Manager Marie Lyhne gives us the inside scoop on breaking taboos around sex and how conversations with thousands of women all around the world shaped the design of what they hope will be the go-too for birth control. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: YouTube Channels: EmpowHER, TEDx Talks. Nyhedsmedier: CNN. / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 [https://open.spotify.com/episode/6szkNMLZDjQi4KTpaEgWwc] / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org / And, don't forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

42m
Episode 13: Avantgarde avatars
31/8 2021

Episode 13: Avantgarde avatars

Our online identities are becoming the most important way we interact with society. If we can filter and customise every aspect of how we look, why not get creative with our clothing? We take a deep dive into the endless possibilities of digital fashion with pioneers, The Fabricant. The studio’s Creative Strategist Michaela Larosse explains how they’re already helping big names, from Puma to Karlie Kloss, make supply chains more sustainable, why collectors are jumping on virtual garments now, and how soon we’ll all be dressed to the nines for the digital universe. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: YouTube Channels: Taco Stacks, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, i-D Netflix: Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 [https://open.spotify.com/episode/6szkNMLZDjQi4KTpaEgWwc] / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don't forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

39m
Episode 12: The smell of tomorrow
27/7 2021

Episode 12: The smell of tomorrow

Most of us take our sense of smell for granted, yet it's one of our most primal and powerful human functions. This month, we meet Osh Agabi, Founder of Koniku, the Silicon Valley company using synthetic biology to design and develop an army of 'smelling cyborgs'. But, why? By replicating the world's most exceptional noses, we'll be able to sniff out danger and disease at unprecedented levels, from explosives to COVID-19, thereby revolutionising healthcare and safety. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: The Relaxed Guy, Vincenzo's Plate, Will Roegge, Trav Que & n Beats / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don't forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

41m
Episode 11: A play for press freedom
29/6 2021

Episode 11: A play for press freedom

Freedom of the press is the cornerstone of democracy. But as the media landscape becomes more convoluted and global surveillance surges, is censorship and manipulation bound to increase? This month, we sit down with the great minds behind The Uncensored Library, an initiative that tackles censorship through gaming. Tobias Natterer and Nina Martinelli of agency DDB explain how they're using Minecraft, the world's most popular computer game, as an effective publishing loophole to get essential facts and stories into the hands of those who need them most. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: NBC News, C-Span and Fox News / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

45m
Episode 10: Discover, design, survive
1/6 2021

Episode 10: Discover, design, survive

Exploration has always led to ground-breaking innovation. Whether it's trekking to the most remote glaciers, scouring the harshest deserts, or diving to the deepest parts of the oceans. This month, we sit down with design icon Yves Béhar to chat about his futuristic underwater habitat PROTEUS, designed with renowned ocean explorer Fabien Cousteau. Béhar shares his sustainability journey, from swimming in a revived Lake Geneva as a child to designing for some of the world's biggest brands and organisations, and how he hopes PROTEUS will activate a new generation passionate about conservation. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: Random Things, Michael Ghelfi – RPG Ambiences & Music, Greenpeace USA, BBC Radio 1, Guardian News, News.un.org, Jonna Jinton, MW, Sounds Majestic and Nagaty Studio – Sound Effects. / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

44m
Episode 09: Data doomsday
3/5 2021

Episode 09: Data doomsday

Our digital footprints are piling up in data centres, sucking up masses of electricity use and pouring out tonnes of emissions every year. But, as our lives become increasingly digital, can we find a solution fast enough? This month, we chat with Sean Mihm, Senior Mechanical Engineer at Boston-based tech firm CATALOG. CATALOG is hacking DNA to use it as the next-gen medium for data storage and computing. Mihm explains why DNA is the perfect solution and how their tech can compress whole data centres into the size of a sugar cube. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: War Games & Netflix / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

42m
Episode 08: Restoring lost voices
30/3 2021

Episode 08: Restoring lost voices

Stephen Hawking's robotic voice from the '80s is a universally-recognised trademark. But since, speech synthesis has seen little innovation, meaning millions still speak with a generic computerised voice. This month, Founder of VocaliD, Dr Rupal Patel, shares how her team uses AI to restore this critical piece of personal identity: giving them a voice that's uniquely theirs. As a pioneer in the field, Patel shares powerful stories of how the tech is changing lives and where she sees it heading —beyond Siri and Alexa— to serve society's greater needs. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: Paul Wilson Creating eLearning Tutorials, TED, Royal Opera House, Great Big Story & 30 Rock (TV-Series) / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org [hello@theindexproject.org] / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

45m
Episode 07: Design vs diversity
23/2 2021

Episode 07: Design vs diversity

White designers still make up more than 70 per cent of the industry, according to the Design Consensus. So, why are the designers of colour missing in action? This month, we chat with up-and-coming designer Mitzi Okou, Founder of 'Where are the black designers?' Okou candidly shares her experiences as a young designer pushing for systemic change, moving the black design narrative away from tragedy, and why prioritising diversity in design is the biggest opportunity we have as an industry — both for society and business. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbites: Vanity Fair & TEDx Talks / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

39m
Episode 06: The (new)clear vision
19/1 2021

Episode 06: The (new)clear vision

Five physicists walk into a basement and start brewing beer. What happens next? This month, we meet Ask Løvschall Jensen, COO and Co-Founder of Seaborg Technologies; the company redesigning nuclear power to make it completely safe and sustainable. Jensen shares his journey from growing up in the ‘Friends of the Earth’ collective, part of the Danish anti-nuclear movement, to becoming a nuclear energy pioneer. We hear how his team is reviving a reactor design from the 60s, combined with masses of computing power, to finally break the planet’s reliance on fossil fuels. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Soundbite: HBO’s Chernobyl / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

38m
EP 05: Let them eat steak!
8/12 2020

EP 05: Let them eat steak!

From fried chicken to foie gras, meat inevitably comes with cruelty and environmental cost. Yet, the world can’t seem to suppress its appetite. This month, we meet pioneer in cellular agriculture Didier Toubia, CEO and Founder of Aleph Farms. We hear how his team are designing with cells and explore why, in the not so distant future, our meat will be 'reared' in vats rather than factory farms. Toubia shares his ideas on balancing tech and tradition, the power of gen Z and why he believes replicating nature for good is fundamental to our survival. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

39m
04: Climate on the menu
10/11 2020

04: Climate on the menu

Today, almost everything we eat is by design. Just as our modern food industry is, by poor design, pushing our planet to the brink. This month, we pick the brain of Pasi Vainikka, CEO of Solar Foods behind pioneering product Solein; a superfood “made from thin air”. We discuss why he calls himself a “possibilist” when it comes to fighting global warming, the death of industrialised meat production, and how Solein could offer the biggest disruption to the food industry we’ve ever seen. Writer & Host: Lesley Price Producer: Sidsel Kaae Nørgaard Composer: Kristina Lilleskov Narration soundbite: Skavlan - SVT1 and Netflix’s Our Planet / Want to know more about this podcast? Take a listen to Episode 00 / If you have feedback or story suggestions, feel free to drop us a line via hello@theindexproject.org / And, don’t forget to subscribe, rate and share. Enjoy!

38m
Episode 03: The sacrifice for style
28/9 2020

Episode 03: The sacrifice for style

'Can design save us?' is a series exploring design as a pioneering force for good. We dive into the most pressing problems of our time and meet inspiring people using design to solve them. We explore the good, bad, complex and controversial.

40m
Episode 02: Activism rebooted
31/8 2020

Episode 02: Activism rebooted

'Can design save us?' is a series exploring design as a pioneering force for good. We dive into the most pressing problems of our time and meet inspiring people using design to solve them. We explore the good, bad, complex and controversial.

35m
Episode 01: A Martian perspective
23/7 2020

Episode 01: A Martian perspective

'Can design save us?' is a series exploring design as a pioneering force for good. We dive into the most pressing problems of our time and meet inspiring people using design to solve them. We explore the good, bad, complex and controversial.

29m
Design or die?
10/6 2020

Design or die?

In our debut episode, we’ll take a deep dive into the world of ‘design to improve life’ with The Index Project CEO Liza Chong. We’ll talk about what makes the organisation tick, some of the most iconic and influential designs celebrated by global design prize The Index Award, and why we need good design now more than ever.

26m