497-321: Sustainable Solutions for Local Food Systems

Meeting Days/Time
Mondays from 10:00 am to 12:40 pm
Andre Nogueira (ID) (anogueira@id.iit.edu) and Carlos Teixeira (ID) (carlos@id.iit.edu)
Appropriate Majors
All interested students are welcome
Social Innovation

Initiatives at multi-level approaches have demonstrated growing interconnectivity, and reflexivity about the impact of the geographic localization related to Food System. Such initiatives are exploring the relevance of new possibilities for receptivity to more diverse interaction within the Food System of Chicago.

The socio-economic, cultural and environmental shifts have shown that the “local movement” prompts a greater receptivity towards and incorporation of diversity related to many stakeholders within the local food system.
In that sense, local-level heterogeneity takes on an analytical and practical importance, alerting us to the catalytic role of agency anchored in local places and regions.

Through this project we will look at the challenges and opportunities of sustainably bringing local food to the people of Chicago by leveraging the interconnectivity of markets, technology, and social networks.

This IPRO project has three goals:

  1. Structure design briefs into strategy(s) plans based on implementation variables, and represent them with visual models.
  2. Connect learnings from the various stakeholders, personal and collective past experiences, and apply them to design concepts.
  3. Consider the sustainable development perspective against market realities (the case of global/local).

Students will be organized in interdisciplinary teams to explore spatial opportunities and system limitations, considering cross-cultural issues and existing infrastructure, while exploring possibilities for the future. From previous concepts, the groups will receive a Design brief and develop plans to implement them.

The first half of the semester will focus on developing a plan and strategy, while during the second half teams will be prototyping and interacting with experts from local urban food system movements. By the end of the course, the teams will present their findings to key stakeholders, the developers of previous concepts, and relevant audiences in the local food ecosystem. This communication opportunity will reinforce student knowledge via visual representation and in building skills in argumentation narrative. At every opportunity possible, the students will represent their learnings, concepts and plans using frameworks and models to convey higher-level ideas about how the emerging knowledge can be structured.

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