Post 8: Brainstorming possibilities – reflect the situation of women in the current century

By Yu Zhang


After the previous research exercise, we collected lots of information and data about mental health, and everyone start has their own specific actor to develop their views of the issue further. At this stage, we started brainstorming the possibilities of mental health and consider the methods of our own visual design responses. Look at my previous blog posts with those research and maps, I decided to develop visual design responses that base on Sexual Assault, use different comments and emotion as the elements to reflect on this issue by visual metaphor. Also, engage with my 3 positions: awareness, fear and external factors. However, the brainstorming exercise helps me to understand further about the issue while exploring the ideas of visual design responses.

The brainstorming exercise started with 5 questions that guide us to develop our own problem statement with the issue. The tutors encourage us to be as specific as possible when we answer those questions. It’s very difficult to answer these questions after you collected massive data from the previous exercises, but it’s the pathway to guide us to prepare the draft proposal.

The Problem: Sexual Assault


1.Who does the problem affect?

The stakeholders of this problem are women, especially teenagers, young adults and housewife around age 15-35. Criminals are mostly target on the women who looks young, beautiful, sexy and soft to satisfy their desire.

What are the boundaries of the problem?

The women who lack of knowledge about how to protect themselves in public place, how to seek help from family and community, and how to release the negative thoughts and emotion after the case happened. The man who lack of awareness about the equality of men and women,  contain the desire and thoughtfully consider the harm to women. The government lack of capacity on security, policies of women rights and education of prevention.

When does the problem occur? When does it need to be fixed?
The problem occurred since human born in the earth, but the society just started to pay attention to this problem since the 1600s by providing some limited protection from laws and security. In the current century, most of people still blind about the consequence of Sexual Assault that can promote serious problems of society, because of the education still not pay enough attention to the prevention self-protection and release negative emotion of Sexual Assault. On the other hand, this problem is impossible to be fully fixed because of the quality of education and security are not able to be consistent anywhere anytime, it will cost lots of human Resources and material resources which is not realistic. But decrease the rate of the issue as soon as possible is definitely necessary.

Where is the problem occur?

In normal life, the problem happened at somewhere that’s lack of people. For example, small corridor around the city, narrow public space like toilet and storage, and some dark space with messy people like nightclub and bar. Usually, the problem occurred at night while the women in a powerless condition like drunk and dizzy. However, the problem occurs anywhere, especially the country where the authority and status of women are very low, this phenomenon might be involved with policies of the country, religion, and the social atmosphere.

Why is it important?

This problem involved with lots of social issues, includes equality of men and women, authority, and status of women and the quality of public security. These issues might affect the levels of happiness to family that has daughter and mother, or even have a risk to lost their female family member if they have to face with Sexual Assault. If the society still not pays enough attention to the protection and prevention on this problem, the rate of suicide, the rate of people with mental illness, and the rate of family with overwhelming pressure won’t able to decrease.

Problem statement

Develop something that can help women to be aware of how to protect themselves while change the awareness of men about how to be more respectful to women and  the functions of treating women.

Five point summary:

After the problem statement finished, I tried to summarise the findings from the exercise while discover the possibilities that relate to my chosen issue.

1. Develop a Data Visualization that base on the positions of surveillance camera with a location map to guide residents realize they are in a security field while that might weaken the chance to commit a crime.

2. Develop a Service Design for a monitor system on the surveillance camera that can display the information of the people in the camera, include the name, age, height etc. It’s able to record the behavior of people and provide evidence if they commit a crime.

3. Develop a Service Design for an App about a digital psychologist Siri that can help users to seek comfort if they don’t emotionally feel well, include some appreciate activities, music, funny comics etc. It can help people with mental illness to realize that something around them is able to seek help.

4. Develop a Data Visualization that base on the situation of women in the current century includes how much do man/women earn, what kind of jobs do man/women do for living, levels of education of man/women etc. It reminds people to think about the equality of man and women is appropriate or not in their society.

5. Develop an Experimental Processes that base on the view of education on Junior High School about how to protect and prevent the social issue, include sexual assault. It helps the younger generation have strong awareness to protect themselves while decreasing the rate of criminals.

Draft  Proposal:

After finished the five point summary, I decided to choose to develop a Data Visualization that base on the situation of women. This proposal can reflect the equality of men and women that helps people to be aware how to respect and protect women while decreasing the rate of sexual assault. The proposition will base on the data of how much do man/women earn, what kind of jobs do man/women do for living, levels of education of man/women etc. I still consider the style of visual design responses in my week 6 blog, base the data in the shadow of the person, but will refine the shadow to be more like a female. Also, remove the dialogue texture to provide more space for scale up the shadow to insert more data on it or develop another smaller elements instead. The color coding for representing the data, I consider to use red and blue to interact the relationship between men and women while developing a visual metaphor to guide readers be aware of the equality of men and women is not fully set up yet in the current society. Also, enhance people’s awareness to start respect women and stop harm them by the visual style of figure and ground.