The State Of Design: Towards An Assessment Of The Development Of Industrial Design In Turkey

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1993
Er, Alpay
It has been more than twenty-five years since the concept of industrial design was first introduced into the Turkish context. During this period, industrial design was primarily taught as an off-shoot course from the existing architecture and interior design programmes, then separate, fully fledged industrial design departments were founded at some universities. Today these departments have their own postgraduate programmes and the number of graduate industrial designers İn Turkey is appoaching towards one thousand. In 1994, even an international product design symposium was organised in Ankara. At first everything seems to suggest a fast and healthy development in the field of industrial design. However, it appears to be somewhat problematic to picture the overall development of industrial design in Turkey as being fast and healthy, despite a quick expansion of industrial design education at university level in the last fifteen years. What is missing from a complete picture is the nature of developments taking place on the industry and government policy fronts. These are vital for an overall assessment of the development, or underdevelopment, of industrial design in Turkey. So far, it has not been possible to obtain such an assessment since we still lack a critical evaluation of the development of industrial design in Turkey, including the economic and political dimensions of its very existence in this country. This article, exploring the state of industrial design in Turkey through an empirical, field study, attempts to initiate a discussion for the critical evaluation of the development of industrial design and its role in the process of new product design and development. For this aim, in addition to a critical review of the early literature on the Turkish industrial design, which is limited lo a few articles and reports, the results of a comparative survey of industrial designers from Turkey and some other Newly Industrialised Countries (NICs) are also presented to obtain a more accurate picture of industrial design in Turkey. The data used in this paper relics on the initial part of a recent research project (Er, 1994). As argued elsewhere (Er, 1993), the basic deficiency of design studies regarding developing countries has been the lack of empirical research investigating the nature of design practice. Turkey is no exception. On the contrary, our country seems to suffer more from the lack of research-based information in this field than many other countries. Therefore, it is hoped that, however limited in its scope, the presentation of empirical-based data will pave the way for a fresh look at the development of industrial design in Turkey.

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Citation Formats
A. Er, “The State Of Design: Towards An Assessment Of The Development Of Industrial Design In Turkey,” ODTÜ Mimarlık Fakültesi Dergisi, vol. 13, no. 1-2, pp. 31–51, 1993, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: http://jfa.arch.metu.edu.tr/archive/0258-5316/1993/cilt13/sayi_1_2/31-51.pdf.