Criminality and Creativity: What’s at Stake in Designing Against Crime?

Part of the Edition Angewandte book series (EDITION)


this paper explains what criminals and creatives have in common. First, by describing how to Design Against Crime (DAC), reviewing, in particular, the ethnographic methods linked to ‘thinking thief’ and ‘user’ in order to generate designs against crime. Second, by analyzing strategies used by a variety of artists, designers, entrepreneurs, and criminals that involve opportunism and visually focused modus operandi. Finally, the paper considers the question: If designers, by ‘thinking thief’, are helped to deliver social benefit in terms of reduced incidence and impact of crime, what benefits might be afforded to society by facilitating criminals (and those at greatest risk of becoming criminals) to ‘think designer’ or ‘artist’?


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