The Butsugaku Research Program is a five-year research program which each year gathers information from around the world in order to examine a different contemporary theme pertaining to modern design.
-Organizers: Butsugaku Research Institute and Designtope
-Research Partners: Canon Inc. Design Center, Mazda Motor Corporation, Simplex Investment Advisors, Inc.
-Producer: Masayuki Kurokawa
1. A series of joint research projects looking at a different contemporary theme each year through assignments prepared by our research partner corporations.
2. Theme and Assignments
* Theme in 2006: Universality through Individuality
* Assignments: Prepared by research partner corporations
3. Structure of the Program
-DT DESIGN AWARDS: To gather knowledge from around the world, analyze that knowledge and extract universal themes from it. (Gather information by holding a competition)
Under the overall theme of "Universality through Individuality", an international competition is held to find the best solutions for the assignments prepared by our corporate research partners. The essence of the assignments is to urge people to propose designs which are uniquely suited to themselves personally, and proposals are evaluated on the basis of the universality of the unique idea behind them. Judging is carried out in two stages.
In 2006, the two judges are Shin Azumi and Masayuki Kurokawa.
DT DESIGN AWARDS Winners' Exhibition: Ten selected proposals in each assignment will be exhibited. (Disclosure of information for cooperative evaluation)
A joint exhibition with the corporate research partners will be held in central Tokyo.
Open screening and open discussion: DT DESIGN AWARD winners will be selected from the finalists. (Evaluation and generalization of opinions through competition and cooperation)
Final judging takes place in public. The two judges and representatives of the corporate research partners hold a free discussion and make the final judgment of the proposals.
-Butsugaku Research Institute will hold a seminar on "Universality through Individuality" at one of its regular meetings, and will publish a report at the close of the year-long research cycle.
Philosophy and Methods of the Program
This is a research program centering on the following three points:
1. Theory ←→ Creation
Research the relationship between "theory and creation" and "language and design". Creation is an opportunity to discover theory, and theory acts as a guideline for creation. A piece of work is an embodiment of theory, and theory is a piece of work in words.
2. Collaboration ←→ Competition
The program will go forward based on the two complementary principles of collaboration (meeting and thinking together) and competition (competing and thinking together).
3. Mutual Stimulation
The criticism garnered from expressing one's thoughts to the outside world in turn stimulates one to ever deeper thought.
Supplemental Benefits of the Program
1. Enhancement of corporate image: enhancement of image of research partner corporations' design divisions
2. Gathering of ideas and improved understanding of market trends
3. Recruiting: enhancement of ability of design divisions to attract outstanding design students
4. Outsourcing effect: nurturing of future design alliances
5. Designer stimulation: greater motivation for in-house designers
6. In-house publicity: opportunity to highlight the importance of in-house design divisions of research partner corporations.