Maria Hanson

Making Links - Craft Value Chain


Output: Other

This collection of jewellery artefacts made from recycled glass and metal are the outcome of an enquiry which explored how the application of co-creative design thinking strategies within a rural Indonesian community can provide creative agency for artisan craftmakers. The research is set within the context of the United Nations eighth sustainable development goal, which promotes inclusive and economic growth, employment and decent work for all.

Craft-makers within many overseas development contexts are often seen as inferior to designers, especially within communities where formal education and knowledge about design is limited or non-existent. This collaborative project led by Hanson involved an Indonesian Academic, a UK Fair Trade entrepreneur, a Javanese design graduate, a Balinese craft facilitator and 17 Indonesian artisans in Jombang, a rural village in East Java. A second workshop at ITS, Surabaya involved a further 16 artisans. The fieldwork used Participatory Action Research (PAR) methods through cumulative co-creative design activities devised by Hanson, that sought to empower by teaching design thinking through co-creative making in a collaborative shared studio/workshop environment.

The Making Links project was supported by a Research England GCRF grant. It built upon Hanson and Levick-Parkin’s earlier work (Create and Connect) undertaken with a craft community in Tanzania in 2014 and Dearden and Hanson’s 2017 AHRC funded grant which had established linkages and project partners in Indonesia.

The fieldwork activities and outcomes were documented through a project website; artefacts were exhibited in Plumbon Gambang, Jombang and at ITS, Surabaya. The project was presented at the Making Futures VI conference; People, Place, Meaning: Crafting Social Worlds and Social Making, (19-20 September 2019) and selected as a full paper for the special addition Journal published in 2020. It was also disseminated through a presentation at the 15th International WFTO Fair-Trade Summit in Peru (16-19 September 2019).

Research Output

This collection of images displays the outputs from this project. Find out more details in the full case study below.

Research Method

This research enquiry is situated within Participatory Action Research (PAR) (Swantz: 2008) in order
to methodologically position, contextualise, theorise and enhance creative making practices.

Key Methodologies:

Full Project Output

REF '21

To learn more about the output, methods and dissemination of this work, explore the full project submission.

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Maria Hanson