Meet Inês Veiga, visiting PhD student from Lisbon, doing research within social design


We are happy to introduce you to Inês. She has a background in Graphic Design and is now two years into a social design ‘interventionist study of how designers can perform ‘critical’ values and ideal systems in, from and through action within their own design practices’. Inês will be visiting CODE until the end of July 2016. Do not hesitate to contact her if you want to know more. Read more about her background and interests below.


I’m Inês Veiga, PhD student from the doctoral program in Design at the Faculty of Architecture, University of Lisbon carrying a practiced-based research on social design principles and practices exploring how designers work in this realm.

Starting in 2013 with an extensive literature review on several expressions associated (1), I have been collaborating with GESTUAL (2), other designers, artists and activists in ‘Right to the city’, participatory and social change processes in few neighborhoods in Greater Lisbon.


As design practitioner and researcher engaged both practically and ideologically, my aim has been to explore moves, connections and intra-actions between people, things and ideas that give form to ‘socially engaged’ practices. Thus, tracing, collecting and crafting emergent possibilities from within such experimental and collective doings and ecologies, the research is an interventionist study of how designers can perform ‘critical’ values and ideal systems in, from and through action within their own design practices.

Departing from a feeling of unrest about the discipline, this is a project to regain hope for open-ended and expanded design futures. A move in the continuity of historical manifestos and claims for design’s societal relevancy, arguing that by doing and performing design (differently) through the social and the collaborative new imaginaries and democratic paths can emerge for debating, experimenting – and changing – design work(s).

Graphic designer, graduated in 2008 from the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Lisbon. Between 2008-2013, I worked at thisislove studio (Lisbon). Not coming to terms with what design work is (or can be) in ‘the real world’, in 2010 I took part in !mpact Design for Social Change 6-week summer course at the School of Visual Arts (New York). Coming through as an encouragement, I began to search for ways to actually transform my design practice.

For any interesting thoughts or collaborations, do not hesitate to contact!


(1) Veiga, Inês and Almendra, Rita, 2014. Social Design Principles and Practices, in: Designs Big Debates: Pushing the Boundaries of Design Research. Presented at the Design Research Society Conference, University of Umeå, Sweden, pp. 572-583.

(2) GESTUAL is a research group on socio-territorial studies and local action within architecture, urbanism and anthropology from CIAUD, Research Center for at the Faculty of Architecture, University of Lisbon.

Image credits: © António Pinto

Kowork E5G project, Bairro Alto da Cova da Moura (Amadora), ongoing

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