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2018/2019  KAN-CSDEO1004U  Design Business in Society

English Title
Design Business in Society

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Quarter
Start time of the course Fourth Quarter
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Social Sciences
Course coordinator
  • Trine Bille - Department of Management, Politics and Philosophy (MPP)
Main academic disciplines
  • CSR and sustainability
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 25-06-2018

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • Define and compare theoretical perspectives that describe the role of design as a social, cultural and legal entity in society, and apply them to exemplary cases.
  • To identify areas of intellectual property law that are relevant to design entrepreneurship and to argue for strategic uses thereof
  • To demonstrate abilities to evaluate the dynamic context of design and analyse the role of change agents in designing social change
  • To demonstrate abilities to research and analyze challenges to design entrepreneurship related to social, legal and environmental effects
Design Business in Society:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
Assignment type Essay
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure

This course considers design in the light of sustainability, law, culture and social value paying heed to theoretical as well as strategic potentials.


The aim will be to provide students with an understanding of contemporary societal contexts of design. Course lectures will provide opportunities to examine and discuss the ways that law serves as a framework for design entrepreneurship and design businesses. In particular, intellectual property law works as a system for sustaining the cultural, societal and commercial value of design. Based on a solid understanding of this branch of law, the course will examine its application and implications for design, and will enable students to act strategically as future design entrepreneurs. Furthermore, the course will apply  legal and cultural perspectives as well as theories of practice and learning to investigate the specific role of socially useful design (led by forces of social change) at different scales of action (individual behaviour, community and cities),  Real-life cases and site visits (when available) will complement readings and class activities in demonstrating the contribution of design to redirecting social practices, to communicate the value of sustainable lifestyles, and to strengthen social cohesion in urban communities. Ultimately, the course will enhance students’ understanding of and interaction with society and the law as it applies to design entrepreneurship.

Description of the teaching methods
Lectures, case studies, study visits and guest lecturers.
Feedback during the teaching period
Office hours
Student workload
Attending class 33 hours
Preperation 143 hours
Exam 30 hours
In total 206 hours
Expected literature

Suggested readings (indicative)


Scott, K., Bakker, C., & Quist, J. (2012). Designing change by living change. Design Studies33(3), 279-297.


Thorpe, A., & Gamman, L. (2011). Design with society: why socially responsive design is good enough. CoDesign7(3-4), 217-230.


Schwarz, M., & Krabbendam, D. (2013). Sustainist Design Guide.


Manzini, E., & Rizzo, F. (2011). Small projects/large changes: Participatory design as an open participated process. CoDesign7(3-4), 199-215.


Ceschin, F., & Gaziulusoy, I. (2016). Evolution of design for sustainability: From product design to design for system innovations and transitions. Design Studies47, 118-163.


Brown, A. & Waelde, C. (eds.) (2018). Research Handbook on IP and Creative Industries. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.


Op Den Kamp, C. & Hunter, D. eds. (2019). A History of Intellectual Property in 50 Objects, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Raustiala, K. & Sprigman, C. (2012). The Knockoff Economy: how Imitation sparks Innovation, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012


Schovsbo, J. & Teilmann-Lock, S. (2016). ‘We wanted More Arne Jacobsen Chairs but all we got was Boxes: Experiences from the Protection of Designs in Scandinavia from 1970 till the Directive’. International Review of Intellectual Property and Competition Law, 47 (4), 418-437.


Sherman, B. & Bentley, J. (1999). The Making of Modern Intellectual Property Law, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Last updated on 25-06-2018