How Humanity-Centered Design Reshapes the Future Learning Experience of Public Area in Transition

by Sheng-Hung Lee, Designer and Professor at Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts

The Future Learning Experience of Public Area – Redesign Shanghai Library Innovation Space is a project based on humanity-centered thinking that covers every aspect of the Shanghai Library Innovation Space (the Space), from the individual, product, organization, and space, to the service and experience it offers. The purpose of the redesign lies in making knowledge come alive and flow freely so that users can learn and experience in the Space what extends beyond the library. A more enriching learning experience for readers in turn testifies to librarians’ greater role in this process.

The Space has always been the benchmark in the exploration of innovation space for Chinese libraries. Yet in face of market change, consumer trade-up, industrial transformation and technological advances, it has to reposition itself in order to maintain its leading role in the practice of library innovation by delivering better experience for both its users and librarians through culture rebuilding, all the while following the Shanghai Library’s mission of “providing excellent knowledge services”. A survey of users and librarians highlights the need to establish a more distinctly defined value proposition, deal with the incompatibility and interaction between different areas or sections, improve the design to meet the actual needs of users/librarians, enhance librarians’ services and interact with users in more varied forms.

Designing libraries—repositories of the best of human knowledge—is no small feat, since it signifies a greater social responsibility for advancing human civilization and culture, as in the case of the Space where knowledge, education and innovation intersect. A humanity-centered approach enhances design elements in space so much that knowledge, education and innovation opportunities can be found everywhere and come in the context of dialogues rather than just exist in the physical environment. The knowledge-based services provided by the Space feature diverse and customized innovation education courses suited to users’ needs in the forms of lecture, speech and workshop, in order to better connect with the users. The Space also nurtures an innovation-oriented culture and knowledge-based community with a more positive influence on the society.


About Sheng-Hung Lee

Sheng-Hung Lee is an industrial and product experience designer, maker and an adjunct associate professor at Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts. He is trained as an industrial designer and electrical engineer, and his approach to problem solving is influenced by his passion for how design and technology impact on and can be integrated into society. He has collaborated with Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) to inform their strategy, service and user experience for the Asia market, this work was been published in the book.

About Sheng-Hung Lee Design

Sheng-Hung Lee Design is led by Prof. Sheng-Hung Lee and we are a team of designers, makers and culture shapers from cross-disciplinary backgrounds that make meaningful social impact through applying humanity-centered creative process.

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