Peace Pods is a design challenge to create solitary space for healing through physiological and sensory means, thus helping to reshape personal narratives.
In collaboration with Open Paths Counseling Center and partner clinics in Los Angeles, USC students and faculty collaborate across disciplines, exploring potential crossovers between psychotherapy, neuroscience, and immersive design solutions. Through applied design innovation, the project’s laboratory is creating personal reparative spaces, “Peace Pods”, for eventual use in clinics serving marginalized communities. These designs are focused towards meeting the needs of Open Path’s most vulnerable clients: women who have experienced trauma.
The project’s process begins with a research phase and continues through the design, fabrication, and evaluation of prototypes by students and their partnering clients. During the research and design process, students are asked to consider the clinics’ practices and the clients’ needs for personal safe spaces which are separate from home or work to support reflection, practice and play. Following this, students create an evaluation process for partner clinics to test the prototype(s) with their clientele.
- Changes infrastructure support for marginalized women by imagining and providing immersive safe spaces for healing
- Supports human bodies in owning their own storytelling
- Generates a focused design process using interdisciplinary skills by engaging students in robust investigation of the prototype and fabrication process