Episode 50: Fighting Crime by Design with Lorraine Gamman, Adam Thorpe and Marcus Willcocks
Often, when societies want to reduce crime, the idea of more severe punishments comes up. But as lawyers have learnt in criminology classes, that is certainly not the way to go. There are more and more studies showing that more severe punishments not only do not prevent crime but may actually have the opposite effect. In this episode we talk about how to fight crime by design and hear from experts Lorraine Gamman, Adam Thorpe and Marcus Willcocks who work at the Design Against Crime Research Center in the UK.
The mission of Design Against Crime Research Center is to disrupt crime by bringing together government, businesses, local communities, prisoners and returning citizens to generate strong socially responsive, co-created crime prevention strategies and crime diversion projects. Lorraine, Adam and Marcus tell about their projects and we hear what ethical aspects using design against crime have.
We discuss about how crime-doers and prisoners differ as targeted end-users or participants in a design process and how design can empower prisoners to change the path of their lives. In addition, our host Henna, inspired by her own neighborhood in Helsinki, asks questions how to approach solving local crime issues using design.
This is also a milestone for Legal Design Podcast, as this marks our 50th episode! Thank you all for your kind words and support and thank you for listening! Many more to come!
Dr. Lorraine Gamman is Professor of Design at Central Saint Martins and Director of UAL’s award-winning Design Against Crime Research Centre (DACRC), which she founded in 1999. An authority in applied social design practice, she is co-creator of a range of award-winning anti-crime product interventions and online resources that interpret and address offender techniques. Lorraine teaches in the UK and overseas as Visiting Scholar to international design schools and is currently advisor to the UK’s National Criminal Justice Arts Allowance (NCJAA). She has co-developed significant research funded projects and design outputs and presents extensively on her research and design approaches. She works with policy-makers, crime prevention practitioners, students and communities; and draws on creative teaching and learning methods to involve prisoners in designing against crime.
Adam Thorpe is Professor of Socially Responsive Design at Central Saint Martins College, University of the Arts London (UAL). He is Co Director of the Design Against Crime Research Centre and Coordinator of the UAL DESIS Lab (Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability). He is Principal Investigator of the Public Collaboration Lab, a platform for teaching & learning, knowledge exchange and research focused on participatory design for social, service and policy innovation, delivered in partnership with London Borough of Camden (2015-present). Adam is the Lead Academic for MAKE, a maker space supporting creative collaboration between residents, students and other stakeholders in Somers Town (2018-present) and leads the EU H2020 funded T Factor research for UAL which explores the potential contribution of participatory approaches to temporary urbanism to more inclusive regeneration (2020-2024).
Marcus Willcocks leads the Public Space strand of the award-winning Design Against Crime Research Centre (DACRC), at the University of the Arts London. As Research Fellow, he is also active with the Socially Responsive Design Innovation hub and Public Collaboration Lab at UAL. He fuses research-led design practice and practice-led research, through place-based, socially responsive and collaborative practices.Willcocks’ focus centres social, safer and equitable connections between people and places. In particular, how real-world applications of research learning and design practice can give way to deliverable innovations and improvements in local-level wellbeing. In his external practice, Marcus is Senior Urban Designer with Sustrans and a Design Council Expert. Marcus holds a Master’s in Design and Public Space, a Diploma in Crime Prevention through Urban Design and Planning, and a BA (Hons) in Product Design.