Rough sleeping in the London Borough of Camden

For the first Unit “Service Experience Design for Social and Corporate Innovation” students have worked on a project  based on a collaboration with the St Pancras and Somers Town (London Borough of Camden) Living Centre and Professor Adam Thorpe from UAL Public Collaboration Lab. The challenge was to use service design to engage local stakeholders and to carry out research to better understand the experiences of rough sleepers in the Borough of Camden, what current support is in place and more importantly to find out what they need, giving them a voice and finding new ways to support people off the streets.

Students carried out primary research activities in the field, conducted interviews with local people holding a stake in the rough sleeping issue, residents, businesses, local service providers and rough sleepers.

All research data was synthesized and presented share to stakeholders, in order to co-define what the common challenges were.

These collaborative activities helped students to refine their “how might we” questions and develop refined responses and initial concepts.

In the final phase of the project (between January and February) students prototyped and tested their concepts through workshop and ideas presentations in front of  industry experts and stakeholders.

The project is entering the implementation phase and some of the concepts from our students are being taken further, currently looking to secure funding from the Urban Partners.

Sarah Elie, Executive Director of Somers Town Community Association and leading the ‘Rough Sleeping Camden’ Collaboration Project says of the collaboration:

‘Working with the students was a genuinely collaborative and empowering experience and we welcome the insights and awareness that they brought to the project and look forward to working with the university again in the future’