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Design Driven Manufacturing


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The Design Driven Manufacturing Initiative is an interdisciplinary research project that uses design as the intentional factor in the revitalization of post-industrial communities –particularly tobacco, extraction, furniture, and textile areas. The role that designers play as both master builders and innovators was popularized by prominent practicing architects in the last decade (Kieran, Timberlake, 2003).

2014 NEW BASE INDUSTRYThe DDM initiative is built on the premise that designers and the design process provide a unique set of solutions for rebuilding the domestic manufacturing sector. This initiative has allowed architecture and urban and environmental planning students to work directly with local manufacturers and communities to explore new building products and industries. The research follows three lines: 1) an innovative approach to design and application of building products manufacturing; 2) the fostering of new manufacturing potential in post-industrial communities using existing built, natural, and location assets; and 3) move new materials applications research-to-market process. With potential to build a new dimension of the creative economy, this project is exposing students across the arts, design, and development disciplines to timely research and critical needs in our manufacturing market and our communities.

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This project was originally funded by an Arts and Action grant in 2013. Since then Jeana Ripple was awarded a Jefferson Grant to expand the fabrications research component of the research over the next two years. Both Ripple and Moomaw have been supported by the School of Architecture with additional research assistants for the initiative.

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The next step is work directly with people in place on the implementation of the idea. This will require more in-depth economic and agricultural analysis, an advancement of our own research on applications and the potential for cluster industries, and partnerships. In addition to funding for research, we also need funding for developing an expanded prototype perhaps in partnership with Blandy Farms, space for fabrication product development, and econometrics analysis.


PLAN5420 Economic Development
This course explores the economy of a community, neighborhood, or region as an essential element, in livability and sustainability. Planners engage economic development by working with the community to assess needs and opportunities, through public-private business partnerships, and in development review.

ARCH 3010/4010 DDM Research Studio