BEANOR – Abstract

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BEANOR is an ongoing project in KEYIHUI Social Lab. It is a service design project for Intellectualy Disabled People (IDP) who are in service centres in Wuxi. It aims to provide a new lifestyle for IDPs by planting bean sprout vegetables through a new business mode. BEANOR enables IDPs to plant organic bean sprouts at indoor disabled service centres and enables them connect with nature. These activities bring about a new lifestyle, and they can increase their income through selling organic bean sprouts to residential communities nearby or through the internet. As the project proceeds BEANOR will improve integration of nearby communities and decrease the possibility of discrimination against the IDPs. The project is currently in the development stage, since more support from government and the various stakeholders is required to make it proceed successfully. Needs include a more suitable clean area for cultivation. Additionally the project needs to increase interest in IDPs to become the participants of the planting project. Last but not least, the problem of distribution needs to be further refined, this includes increasing the trust between producers and consumers to increase product uptake. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – Promoters

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Jiangnan University JU DESIS Lab China Miaosen Gong, Li Zhang, Huan Li Promoters: School of Design, Jiangnan University JU DESIS Lab Sunny Group Wuxi Binghu District government Funder: Wuxi Binghu district social enterprise foundation Acknowledgements: With thanks all the participants of the project.

BEANOR – Governance and policymaking

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BEANOR is housed in an Intellectually Disabled Persons (IDP) service centre. There are three rooms for the IDPs, one for working, one for resting, and the other for activity. The project uses the activity room for planting sprout vegetables since this kind of plant doesn’t need soil to grow. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – Activism and Civic Participation

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At the beginning of the project, we co-designed with the administrators who work in the service centre, because they understand Intellectually Disabled People (IDP) well. They informed the design team which IDP could do which part of the planting process. In fact, the IDPs do not always stay at the service centre; when they are not there, the permanent residents in the service centres building help to water the sprout vegetables. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – Social interactions and relations

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BEANOR makes it possible to enhance social interaction in two aspects.: firstly, Intellectually Disabled People (IDPs) are more confident and happy through the planting activity; secondly, through the selling process IDPs are provided with more opportunity to communicate with other people in the community. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – City and environmental planning

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Even though BEANOR is just a planting activity in an interior space, it brings nature and vitality to the Intellectually Disabled People (IDP) service centre and improves the environment there.

BEANOR – Production, distribution and consumption

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BEANOR does not only provide a service for Intellectually Disabled People (IDP), but also is a service for urban agriculture. Residents can buy the organic food produced by the IDPs at the service centre directly or order it from the BEANOR app, and then BEANOR will send the fresh vegetables to your home at your convenience. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – Skill Training and Design Education

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The design team have redesigned the planting process and co-designed with the administrator according to the IDP’s capability. All IDPs were initially taught how to plant, through observe the difficulties they may encounter in the planting process were identified, and then iteratively the process was improved. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – Job Creation

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BEANOR brings new lifestyle to the Intellectually Disabled People the community around them. Through selling the organic food to the residents they can earn money and improve their quality of life. (JU DESIS Lab)

BEANOR – Storytelling and Visualisation

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Storytelling and visualisation are both good approaches to communicate between designers and users; through these two tools, Intellectually Disabled People and the community around them can easily see what will change after they do these kind of projects before they actually undertake them. After prototyping, we can get feedback directly. (JU DESIS Lab)