Projects announced for DfG’20!


Design for Government projects for 2020:

Just Transition to Post-Oil Heating in Homes

by the Ministry of Environment and ORSI research project/consortium

Finland has an ambitious target to become carbon neutral by 2035. However, due to the cold climate in Finland, residential heating consumes a relatively high amount of energy. Oil is still commonly used for central heating in single-family homes, and these upwards of 130,000 homes homes represent a significant CO2 emission reduction potential. Moving away from residential oil-heating is much more than a technical question of energy systems and substitutes. The Ministry of the Environment is assessing measures to ensure a fair and just transition in the matter. This requires knowledge and understanding of the citizens living in the oil-heated housing: what hinders the transition, what are the effective means and measures and how the state can most effectively support the transition? This project looks at the role of single-family homes in Finland, including regulation of their lifespans and residential lifestyles.

Boosting Climate Education

by the Ministry of Environment  Ministry of Education and Culture,

Finnish National Agency for Education, ORSI research project/consortium

‘Climate education’ is key to meeting ambitious national and municipal decarbonization targets in the future. In shaping the next generation of increasingly pro-active, responsible and climate-conscious citizens, education can indeed be understood as an important instrument for policy. Today, youth understanding of climate change and possible action vary widely by age and gender, potentially inducing personal anxiety and interpersonal tension. While relevant teaching materials exist for primary school education, there may be a lack of appropriate materials for older students. In addition, there are a number of promising extra-curricular initiatives. This project addresses a potential gap between governmental climate education aims and student experience within everyday learning environments and activities.

ORSI and DfG collaboration

In 2020 and 2021, DfG collaborates with the ORSI research project, which is funded by the Strategic Research Council that operates under the Academy of Finland. ORSI stands for “Towards Eco-Welfare State: Orchestrating for Systemic Impact.” ORSI is a joint undertaking of Tampere University, the Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. ORSI investigates how sustainability concerns challenge welfare states, such as Finland, to change their practices, and how to steer those transitions in fair and robust ways. With ORSI, DfG projects will a platform for public sector stakeholders, researchers and students to explore effective and fair governance of sustainability transitions.
Briefly about ORSI and strategic research
ORSI website

About project briefs

Projects are the result of proposals made by Finnish ministries, refined with DfG teachers (and ORSI in 2020-21) into “project”-sized briefs, which will be further focused and addressed within the course by students. These above are short descriptions of longer project briefs that cover questions framing the project including “Where are we now?”, “Who is the target group?”, “Where do we want to be?”, “How are we going to get there?” and “How will we know we’ve arrived?”.

Hold the date for the Final Show 09:00-12:00 on Tues 19 May!

DfG Final Show is always a popular and lively public event bringing together civil servants, design professionals, alumni and educators. Subscribe to our mailing list or stay tuned on Facebook or Twitter to hear from us as soon as we know more details, and watch this blog for continuous updates including insider progress-reports from students throughout the spring…


Image credit (top): A map of research insights from ‘Consumer Rights Covered‘, one of the DfG’19 proposals for the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority with the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment by David Martens, Jiyoung Son, Linh Duong, Tiina Alanko, and Xuyang Zhang.