Conference on Universal Design in India
Asia-Pacific, Universal Design, March 11 2015
COIMBATORE: DJ Academy of Design (DJAD) in association with the British Council is hosting a two-day conference on “Universal Design and Development” at The Residency on March 13 and 14.
“Inclusive” design, which is both sensitive and critical, is the theme of the Conference, said Sanjay Jayavarthanavelu, Trustee, GKD Charity Trust and Chairman, Governing Council, DJAD, briefing press persons.
Emphasizing the importance of providing a design solution – be it product or service – for all (without discrimination between those with normal abilities and disabilities) to create an inclusive society, he said, “Design in India faces three crucial challenges today. First, it (design) is quite young. The realization, power and potential of design has just started to dawn on people; second, between battling on multiple fronts, the country has to cope with the pressures of development in terms of providing basic necessities and third, Universal design is still a far cry here, considering the steady increase in the number of people with different abilities due to modern life pressures.”
Stating that most public places, be it heritage sites, schools, malls, parks, roads, public transport system, theaters or even hospitals are not accessible to people with disabilities and older people, he said, “This side of human development has escaped the attention of designers, planners, architects and the government in a country where an estimated 125 million elderly (2014 census) and 63 million people with vision disabilities (not taking other disabilities into account), mourn silently.”
Besides sensitizing designers and architects about inclusive design, the Academy is hoping to bring social integration through design.