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The Prototyping Service Experience as a Tool of Empathy and Research: from Finland to Chile. Soto, Mariluz; Alhonsuo, Mira and Miettinen, Satu (2023) conference paper. Link here 
Abstract: This article shows the journey of exploring a Finnish service prototyping laboratory with the purpose to create a similar environment in Chile with an emphasis on empathy. Service prototyping is one of the important stages of the service design process where all ideas converge and make visible the opportunities to improve services. Making ´the ideas visible´ happens through building collaborative mockups to shape and test possible solutions or service journeys. In Chile, service design is not widely developed and the prototyping stage is more common for the development of products than services. The article dive into the question ´How service prototyping can bring empathy and enhance research based on collaborative practice to improve people’s experiences?´ The main conclusions highlight the characteristics of service prototyping as a key moment to incorporate empathy in the research stages to visualize the opportunities to improve services, results and user experience.

Record of a multispecies creative exploration in the austral forests. Soto, Mariluz and Tolosa, Mauricio (2022) Book chapter. Link here 
Abstract: This chapter explores the crossing of borders that separate the human realm from the world of plants, here proposing a community of interaction where cocreation can emerge as a virtuous relationship between the two. Collective creation, from the artistic and design areas, has been a human domain, in which ideas, intellect and language are the main drivers; however, this text records the collective creation inspired by various forms of life, specifically the audio-visual cocreation that emerged in the Chilean Patagonia where the authors and austral forests participated. The making of the film follows an organic flow that occurred without planning and expectations; this surprised the authors at every step, where encounters, coincidences and contributions took place, making it possible for this film to sprout, develop and expand. The arboreal worlds were recorded in the haiku writing and in images, both of which account for the magic and presence of the Patagonian Forest and the dissolution of the boundaries between the humanity and nature duality. Do Apple Trees Dream? is an exploration of the pluriverse in a radical dimension—of the transformation of the human mental universe into a pluriverse as a space shared with other living beings. 

Design for balance: wellness and health. Soto, Mariluz; Xue, Haian and Tsekleves, Emmanuel (2022) Editorial article. Link here 
Abstract: Health and well-being are areas that undoubtedly have a significant relevance in people’s lives. Design from research and practice has the challenge of responding to the needs and challenges that emerge on a daily basis and those that generate crises worldwide, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, health has the ability to destabilize people’s personal lives and currently the entire world. This article explores the connections between design, health and well-being, emphasizing reflections that specifically involve people’s quality of life. This article proposes placing design in an active role in the creation of solutions and opportunities that benefit people in those aspects that largely determine the perception of well-being. As a consequence, the design could be considered the balance between both concepts, aiming to benefit human life. 

Empathic perspective to understand people’s experiences in the service prototyping context in Chile. Alhonsuo, Mira and Soto, Mariluz, (2022) Book chapter. Link here 
Abstract: Service prototyping is a commonly used method in design practice, especially in the service design field. The values of service prototyping are not only found in concretising abstract services, but also in the fact that it is a method that supports internal and external communication and enabling the exploration of new behaviours. This chapter reflects part of a research project carried out in Chile. The focus of the project was to identify the different aspects that could be transferred from Service Innovation Corner (SINCO) in Finland to the Chilean culture. SINCO laboratory, which is located at the University of Lapland, is a prototyping environment based on role playing and offers technology-aided tools for the visualisation and concretisation of service situations. The study used collaborative autoethnography as its basis throughout the process, and its elements have been utilised in the research process of this study, in the structure of five online workshops and in the ‘Prototyping through Empathic Insights’ framework. 

Emotions and the Service Designer: A Relationship Uncovered. Soto, Mariluz, Mikkonen Enni, Miettinen Satu (2020) Diseña Journal. Link here 
Abstract: Emotions are present throughout the service design process for each participant, yet the own emotional experience of designers has rarely been addressed in design research. This paper is focused on the role and meaning of the emotions identified by service designers in their own experiences conducting or participating in projects, and as workshop facilitators. It builds empirically on a qualitative questionnaire examining their experiences of ‒ and reflections on ‒ the emotions they identified throughout their practices. The findings indicate a signifi-cant variety of emotions and confusion in determining their con-nection to the overall process. A clear under-standing of the emotions associated with this process could strengthen service design-ers’ specific skills, enhancing confidence in decision-making, and adding value to their work. This, in turn, could help service designers to improve their professional per-formance in order to create a more inclu-sive and user-centered design practice in the context of changing scenarios, variable environments, and human interactions. 

Emotions: the invisible aspects of co-creation workshops. Soto Hormazábal, Mariluz; Beaulé, Caoimhe Isha; Alhonsuo, Mira; Miettinen, Satu (2020) Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Design Creativity (ICDC 2020). Link here
Abstract: This article focuses on the emotions service designers experience in their role as facilitators. We will explore emotions in the context of a co-creative environment, and discuss how encounters between participants and facilitators generate different perspectives despite a common environment. Facilitators’ perceptions of participant emotions are lacking in accuracy due to the influence of their own emotional experiences during a workshop. This article suggests that knowledge and understanding of the emotional aspect of co-creation workshops could provide facilitators with additional support when conducting workshops, and lead to better outcomes and more meaningful experiences for all involved. 

The emotions that emerge in the collective creation in a marginal context: Experience in a Chilean Prison. Mariluz Soto & Mariana Kaplún (2019) Conference: Cumulus Conference Proceedings Rovaniemi 2019 Around the Campfire – Resilience and Intelligence At: University of Lapland, Rovaniemi. Finland. Link here 
Abstract: Society and prison are worlds divided by much more than a wall. Judgments and the absence of love are abysses that separate humanity. Collective creation is a fertile atmosphere for trust and respect to emerging. The design constitutes a vital medium to contribute to the approach of worlds and the generation of emotions that help to this encounter. The design is a fertile environment because it integrates and stimulates creativity and allows collective creation. A five-year project put together design students and prisoners to work collaboratively to add new knowledge in sustainability and a more in-depth understanding of society. This experience is central to observe the flow of emotions, the contribution of collective creation and the integration of design in complex social areas. Cumulus Conference Proceedings Rovaniemi 2019 AROUND THE CAMPFIRE-Resilience and Intelligence 744 Therefore, this paper was built from a linking project between design students and prisoners. Its structure reflects the observation, the reading of testimonies and the sensitivity analysis of the results. The content is mainly composed of the experience of those who participated. This article invites to reflect on the role of design as a driver of social integration and collective creation as active participation in the construction of a cultural perspective focused on the well-being of all people. 

From citizens to community. Katherine Mollenhauer & Mariluz Soto (2019). In Satu Miettinen & Melanie Sarantou (Eds.) Managing Complexity and Creating Innovation through Design. Link here
Abstract: In general, the design of solutions for the public sector requires sensitive knowledge about the social and cultural dynamics of citizens. Consequently, the challenge is adapting the diverse design tools and processes to the specific realities of each culture. In Chile, due to its history with modernisation of public services, complexity presents itself when the needs of citizens and institutions are taken into account to determine the precise actions that would reduce resistance to change. In Chile, many of the political decisions in the post military-dictatorship (1973–1990) period were aimed at strengthening a weakened public sector and an invisible civil society. During the first government of Michelle Bachelet (2006–2010), numerous public institutions were strengthened; however, the citizens declared themselves unsatisfied because these services did not attend to their needs or deliver pertinent solutions to their problems. Aware of the low satisfaction of citizens, in 2013 the Public Innovation Laboratory (LIP) was created with the purpose of contributing to innovating the public sector. The LIP team brings together researchers, professionals and students from different knowledge areas to work from a project-grounded research perspective, reflecting on the action and reinterpreting outside the action. LIP has developed projects for the elderly, public spaces, transportation, culture, building, sustainability and health, among others. In this chapter, two projects developed by LIP are described to illustrate the complexity of design in cases where the impact of solutions is or may be at a national level. This chapter seeks to (1) reflect on the complexity of this transformation from citizen-individual to citizen-community and how it affects design, and (2) raise the contribution of co-creation methodologies as a transformation tool for the individual and for activation of communities. 

Diseñar para la Libertad. Mariana Kaplún & Mariluz Soto Hormazábal (2018). Escuela de Diseño. Universidad Católica ISBN: 978-956-398-346-3 {Book}
Abstract: The purpose of this book is to sensitize the reader to a socially invisible reality: the prison, the penitentiary facilities, the inmates. Reading is a journey that invites you to broaden the vision of the «wall» that divides those inside and outside in order to break down prejudice. The book is presented as a conversation between all the actors involved, everyone, students, interns, teachers, authorities and authors. With short texts a vision of freedom is interwoven and made explicit from the perspective and practice of design. This trip is made through design based on the experiences lived during 4 years in the sustainability workshop of Mariana Kaplún. This book presents the results of the work between students and prisoners, the new knowledge acquired, which becomes a new tool for the reintegration of prisoners and a tool for students to develop a perspective of reuse. For the students, it also meant an opening to a reality often invisible to society. It is a book that exposes and makes explicit the role that design and designers have in society, from the most daily problems to the most complex. 

El factor emocional del prototipado de diseño de servicios en el laboratorio SINCO (Service Innovation Corner). Mariluz Soto. (2018) RChD creación y pensamiento Vol. 3 Núm. 4 (2018) Link
Abstract: The SINCO Laboratory of the University of Lapland has developed a methodology in which role playing, co-creation and technology are the central axes to prototype a service. This process allows creating a space of trust in which emotions, experiences and creativity come together in the same place, stimulating collaborative design. Therefore, the role of the designer is essential to articulate and guide the process, becoming a key actor to transform expectations and opinions into concrete proposals for improvement or creation of a service. The prototyping process of a service involves emotions because it requires reliving and recreating previous experiences in order to build new ones. 

Emotional Variables of Interactions Inside of Community. Mariluz Soto (2018) Conference: 14th Student Interaction Design Research Conference at Aalto University, Helsinki. Link here 
Abstract: Emotion is one of the topics of interest for experts and thinkers from different areas of knowledge. This paper explores different visions of the meaning of emotions and how they depend on the previous experiences of each person. It also incorporates the concept of community as an extension of people because in their interactions with others generate unique moments of expression and reconfiguration of emotions, thoughts and behaviours. The results suggest that the observation of the different interactions of people, such as acts or communication products, contain valuable information to create and implement a system of interactions within a service tuned to the needs and possibilities of relationship within a community. Student Interaction Design Research Conference SIDeR ’18.