CHRISTEN JANINE OTTER

OpenIDEO Challenge

This page features my Design Concept submitted in April 2011 for the OpenIDEO Challenge, “How might we better connect food production and consumption?”

OpenIDEO is an interdisciplinary group of creative researchers, ranging from graduate students, to psychologists and graphic designers. Jane Fulton Suri is a Partner and Creative Director at IDEO, she plays a global leadership role, evolving content and craft, human insight, and design thinking in support of client projects worldwide.

For this challenge, OpenIDEO partnered with the Queensland Government in Australia and the IDEAS Festival 2011 to create a closer connection between local food production and consumption that could make a dramatic impact on sustainability efforts.

My solution was nominated by OpenIDEO as a Featured Concept for this Challenge, among 486 other concepts.

I also received a ReTweet commending my concept from Bruce Nussbaum: contributing editor to BusinessWeek, named one of the 40 most powerful people in design by I.D. Magazine in 2005. Nussbaum is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and wrote The World After Oil: The Shifting Axis of Power and Wealth, and Good Intentions.

At the heart of this Challenge lie issues of global sustainability and local happiness to improve life for rural and urban communities. As an information architect and interaction designer, I was asked to consider ways to to improve and enhance the relationships and interactions between producers and consumers, rural and urban communities, growers and retailers, retailers and consumers.

As part of my solution, I was asked to incorporate new services, campaigns, policies, products and systems that could address these issues in a holistic way.

Brainstorming to a philanthropic end, between the phases of inspiration, concepting, evaluation, and collaboration, my objective was to find a productive overlap between business and technical viability. In my ideation process, I took into account such issues as energy use, transportation, biodiversity, food security, nutrition, obesity, the health of rural economies and the strength of inter-generational and intercultural knowledge sharing.

You can find my concept online, on OpenIDEO’s website, here.

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