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Talking to the Future - about Radioactivity: Understanding Radioactivity Through Everyday Product Interactions
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Umeå Institute of Design.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Nuclear waste remains radioactive for thousands of years. Burying it underground in an enormous repository, called Onkalo, surrounded and secured by solid rock is the long-term solution Finnish authorities implement right now. Once the repository is filled up, it will be locked up forever and never opened again. At the same time three new nuclear power plants are built.

Out of Sight, out of Mind?

Ultimately, this raises questions: Can this be the solution for final disposal of nuclear waste? How do we understand a problem clearly exceeding our capabilities as human beings? How do we deal with the dilemmas of uncertainty, invisibility, time, demand, possible contamination, and our individual responsibility as human beings?

Understanding Through Interaction

I designed three everyday products, a lamp, a toy for children, and a pregnancy test, that afford a familiar everyday action on one hand, while exposing a dilemma related to Onkalo on the other. In doing so, the artifacts make those dilemma tangible and facilitate understanding and critical thinking. Sharing a personal experience, the users can engage in a personal discourse around nuclear waste actively, opposing the distant and highly politicalised discourse spread by the media.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Interaction Design, Critical Design, Speculative Design, Radioactivity, Radiation, Nuclear Waste, Onkalo
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-107043OAI: diva2:846666
Subject / course
Degree Project, Interaction Design
Educational program
Master's Programme in Interaction Design
Available from: 2015-09-28 Created: 2015-08-17 Last updated: 2015-09-28Bibliographically approved

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'Talking to the Future - about Radioactivity' by H.Feckenstedt(8289 kB)145 downloads
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File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 8289 kBChecksum SHA-512
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

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Umeå Institute of Design

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