Intersectional Design Thinking at Play in Barcelona
How the concept can be applied to events: a case in point
Mobile World Congress is a hub for intersectional design thinking — the practice where we bring two disparate concepts or ideas together to create something completely new and innovative. It draws people from across the globe — who all hail from various industries — to the sunny Spanish city for four days. It’s the place where two people or brands who otherwise might never come into contact with one another are brought together, paving the way for a new product, practice or idea to be born.
This was evident during an intimate dinner that FreemanXP hosted for clients at the newly opened Soho House in Barcelona ahead of MWC. From the guest list to the team behind the organization of the event and the host venue, intersectional design thinking was clearly at play here.
We had clients from the US, EMEA and APAC regions attend, and they represented brands that operate in various sub-sectors of the mobile space, from telecommunications products and the technologies that are used to power them, to cloud and virtualisation software and even finance. They had the opportunity to discuss industry trends, compare experience design practices in their local markets and talk about cultural norms in their respective regions.
At the end of the night, the guests were armed with fresh insight — whether it was a more in-depth understanding of a market they are targeting or awareness of how a new technology could improve their way of working. They could then take these learnings away and apply them to their own businesses.
The organization and delivery of the event is another great example of intersectional design thinking in action. Drawing on their combined knowledge of their local markets and clients, our US and EMEA-based teams worked together to brainstorm and share ideas around important factors like the host venue, menu selection, and timings. By bringing contrasting ideas together, the teams delivered a successful event that attendees loved.
Finally, the venue — the La Mercè Room at Soho House Barcelona is an eclectic mish-mash of influences. There is a distinct Catalonian and Mediterranean feel to it, and furniture is both antique and contemporary. Printed chairs and rugs are juxtaposed against clean white walls, plus exposed brick and a tiled roof add an air of simplicity, and intricate light fixtures and lamps add character.
Innovation happens at the intersection. In a world of media saturation where everything ‘has been done,’ it’s a way for us to bring fresh, new ideas to our clients which they’ve not seen before. When put into practice in the live space these ideas engage and excite attendees, and create meaningful experiences that will last a lifetime.
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