With most of our attention being drawn reducing waste and saving the environment, we often forget about other ways to engage in socially responsible design. Based out of the University of the Arts in London, Designers Against Crime uses design to address a key element in every society - crime. Through better design and research, they aim to reduce the incidence of criminal activity, equip designers with tools, prove the social benefits of designing out crime, and improve the community at large. The difficulty however is to create designs that look good to the user while deterring the abuser. "Designers need to be far more creative than criminals. The design dilemma is how to design objects, services, and environments that address both users and abusers, without making them look 'criminal'."
Working with designers, criminologists, police, university students and manufacturers, they have come up with some interesting products such as Bikeoff Secure Bike Parking Stands, and our personal favourite, the Karrysafe which has a "built-in alarm [that] will automatically start screaming at 138 decibels if the bag is forcibly removed from its owner." Carrying a well-designed bag that also protects your laptop is not only practical but cool. We all know about form and function, just maybe we need to think about form and prevention.