By VanessaJC September 9, 2019 In Talks

Tech Festival ’19 – Workshop

As part of Tech Festival, an annual festival bringing together creatives and tech evangelists from around the world, Vanessa created a two hour session about Designing for Meaningfulness.

Forbes article on Tech Festival:

This session was co-created with Vanessa’s co-author from her academic research in meaningfulness, Elisa Mekler, Associate Professor at Aalto University in Finland, and with IdemoLab’s Head of Department, Morten Wagner.

The text below is from the original session invitation:

This session is part of Techfestival: a 3-day festival in Copenhagen with 200+ events on humans and technology.

Let’s go Beyond Convenient Tech to Eudaimonic Tech and Fulfilling Your Life’s Purpose

Many so-called smart products today exist to feed tech-hype or produce yet another convenience-based gadget which eventually ends up in a kitchen junk drawer. The question emerges as to which products we actually need.

To challenge this paradigm, Designing for Meaningfulness focuses on the nuances of the outcomes of interactions with smart products. How do these products help you with your self-development, your relationship to others, and your relationship to time?

Designing for Meaningfulness presents a series of tools for design practitioners, product developers, C-level people, academics and creatives to explore how to facilitate meaningfulness in people-to-people, people-to-sense of self, and people-to-time parameters.

In this workshop, we use a series of worksheets to ask ourselves how our products or services might design for people to achieve meaningfulness in their lives. We explore your products and services through group discussion, using a series of worksheets developed as part of a PhD about Designing for Meaningfulness in Future Smart Products.

Register here


Vanessa Julia Carpenter (CND)

Vanessa moved to Sweden for a Master’s of Interaction Design. She joined the Collaborative Interactive Arts Studio illutron, a floating maker space in Denmark & amidst fire cannons, dancers, computer-controlled lights, sounds and robots. She co-created a community of makers, tinkerers, nerds, thinkers, and creatives throughout Scandinavia. She works at FORCE Technology as a Technology Experience Designer with hardware prototyping and has just completed a PhD about Designing for Meaningfulness in future smart products at Aalborg University, Copenhagen.

Elisa Mekler (CH)

Elisa is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Aalto University, Finland. Elisa draws from an interdisciplinary background in Positive Psychology and User Experience, to investigate the characteristics and design qualities of meaningful interactions with technology. Her publications have garnered multiple awards at leading Human-Computer Interaction conferences, including Best Papers at CHI 2016 and CHI 2019 for her work on eudaimonic user experience and meaningful interaction.

Morten Wagner (DK)

Morten is a Technology Pathfinder on a mission – rethinking technology through creativity. He explores and combines technology and processes, to build meaningful experiences. He is the founding manager of IdemoLab at FORCE Technology – with a formal background in computer science and cognitive psychology.

I aim to misbehave

I challenge the status quo because I know there are more thoughtful and useful solutions. I aim to create ideal situations for creativity, networking, and knowledge sharing. I aim to work with people who are striving to surpass their wildest expectations.