The Commodity of Trade (PhD)

The Commodity of Trade in Contemporary Design

This PhD research explores the intersection between the design industry and the ubiquitous media and events industry, focusing on the context of design characterized by limited editions and one-off artefacts. The increasingly growing manifestation of this type of design in the media – and the media in design – has an impact on the way certain designers conceive and practice their profession, and on the design industry as a whole. The aim of this PhD is to provide an understanding of such impact. In doing so, this thesis answers the main question: What commodities (intended as the ensemble of goods, values, competencies and services) are traded in the contemporary design industry and by whom?

The publication includes a number of maps and charts I have made to visualise the data resulting from interviews with commissioners and designers.

Those visualisations do not represent results, but they were means for organising and filtering information, thus facilitating the reflecting process.

Year: 2014