Designers have grown under the shadow of market economies. The discipline has been shaped by specific mechanisms, production concepts and social relationships defined by this economic mode.
As our civilization searches for more sustainable and balanced ways to live, design also struggles to develop meaningful practices that are not solely based or oriented towards market strategies, added-value or mass-produced objects.
There are many assumptions that designers need to confront when entering the field of social-oriented work. The practice needs to change and adapt, abandon areas of comfort and learn from other fields of knowledge: economics, psychology, anthropology, etc. Hopefully, this new knowledge can affect the discipline as a whole.
Conversely, as this article suggests, designers can provide valuable knowledge and tools to other disciplines.
We're struggling with these challenges and dilemmas, too!