Social Responsibility and ethical practice

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Research + reading material

“Ethics in design” blog –


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Kane E. M. (2009). Ethics: A Graphic Designer’s Field Guide. New York: Campbell Hall.

Ethics in graphic design is explored through three different lenses in this graphic designer’s field guide: 1) legalities-the rules that govern the graphic design profession including copyright law, piracy, plagiarism, fair use, and photo manipulation; 2) integrity-principles of right conduct within the field of graphic design including spec work, crowdsourcing, and responsibility to clients and contracts; 3) morality-the general nature of moral choices to be made by graphic designers including sustainability, social responsibility, and cultural influence. The book includes questions for discussion at the end of each section along with a list of resources for further investigation.


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Being good –

Social responsibility –

“Graphic designers like Tibor Kalman prodded fellow designers to take responsibility for their work as designer-citizens. Throughout his career he urged designers to question the effects of their work and refuse to accept any client’s product at face value. Kalman inspired graphic designers to use their work to increase public awareness of a variety of social issues.”

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tiborkalman –

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Shaughnessy A. (2010). How to be a Graphic Designer, Without Losing Your Soul. London: Laurence King.

This revised, extended edition includes all-new chapters covering professional skills, the creative process, and global trends, including green issues, ethics and the rise of digital culture. The book contains all-new imagery, and the previous interviews have been replaced with new ones, each focusing on a specific issue of importance to graphic designers.

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Klein N. (10th Anniversary edition edition 2010). No Logo. London : Fourth Estate.

I’m already reading Naomi Klein’s This Changes Every, Which is about the politics behind global warming.

good term – socially conscious design

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Brown T. (2009). Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation. London: HarperBusiness

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Scalin N. and Taute M. (2012). The Design Activist’s Handbook: How to Change the World (or at Least Your Part of It) with Socially Conscious Design. Ohio: How Design Books.

It just starts with a commitment to yourself and your values. A commitment to making conscious choices and realizing how all the decisions you make as a graphic designer affect other people and the planet.

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Zappaterra Y. (2004). Conscientious Objectives: Designing for an Ethical Message. Hove, England: Rotovision.

“this book informs designers how to find the work; how to introduce the client to the issues; and how to develop projects that are commercially viable and socially responsible.” maybe not so relevant, unless I use it for the case studies.

“Social responsibility has been forgotten”

Unkown. (2012). “Social responsibility has been forgotten”. Available: Last accessed 03/12/15.

“And yet the problem in our society is that we can’t afford durable goods.

Our industrial economy DEMANDS goods to break down, or become obsolete so the consumer will seek to replace it as soon as possible, thus enabling the cogs to keep turning.” Red Pill Junkie


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