Press Release

Contact: Kara Davis
karadavis@gmail.com
(+46) 768973848

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World Usability Day 2009 – The Karlskrona Challenge

Karlskrona, Sweden – October 12, 2009 – On Thursday, November 12, cities and towns around the world will be celebrating World Usability Day 2009. This year's theme is "Designing for a Sustainable World." In Karlskrona, Blekinge Tekniska Högskola is hosting a design contest that invites students and community members to design a product or service that promotes sustainability and makes life simpler for a person, a community, or a business.

Contestants in The Karlskrona Challenge will spend the next month developing and testing their design concepts with relevant stakeholders. To assist them in their efforts, BTH will host workshops to discuss participatory design (PD) and user-centered design (UCD), share user research methods and tactics, and discuss sustainability as defined by the Natural Step's four system conditions.  For more information and to register as a contestant, visit http://karlskronachallenge.org

Recognizing that we are all designers and that we each hold different pieces of the sustainable design equation, The Karlskrona Challenge provides an opportunity for urban planners to learn from mobile designers, for engineers to learn from business minds, for sustainability practitioners to learn from product designers.

When we design well, it is beautiful; we design systems, services, and products with a clear understanding of who will use them, why, and under what circumstances. When we design poorly, we create anxiety and inefficiency.

In this age of climate change, economic depression, and resource depletion, good design is pivotal. Designers are in a difficult position, charged with finding almost magical solutions that don't create new problems. We need help. World Usability Day 2009 gives us a chance to investigate user-centered design practices across fields and develop a clear, shared understanding of sustainability.

Final contest entries will be presented as posters on November 12 at the Rotundan on the Karlskrona campus. Entries will be judged by a panel of experts, and prizes will be awarded that evening.  The event will be open to the public and to industry representatives between 16:00 and 20:00.

Interested participants should register online at http://karlskronachallenge.org by November 5.

World Usability Day was founded in 2005 by the Usability Professionals Association. In 2008, over 200 events were celebrated in more than 40 countries worldwide.  The Karlskrona Challenge is the only event registered in Sweden at this time. Learn more at http://www.worldusabilityday.org

For sponsorship opportunities, please contact Germain Acka (+46) 760806549 or
Erkin Gunay (+46) 708290195

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