Max Mollon

Doctorant SACRe PSL Research University

♦ See ›› publications & CV or academia
◊ See ›› profile non-académique (FR)

Sometimes described as a futurist specialised in itching hair, Max Mollon probes f(r)ictional futures, brings back various conversation pieces from it, and confronts them to ethical and social debates. Max is also a designer, teacher at Science-Po, researcher at PSL/EnsadLab and member of the scientific committee of the Design and Innovative Public Action Research Chair (École du design de Nantes 2017).
His works have been dedicated to design fiction since 2010 and will be punctuated by 7 years of doctoral research in 2019—a thesis strongly anchored in the practice of design. They allowed him to create in 2017 a mensual seminar, the first third-place of participatory research on these practices in France (the Design Fiction Club).
Trained in Switzerland (HEAD-Geneva, 2010), he gradually moved away from R&D (OrangeLabs, Bell-Labs) and international design exhibitions (St-Etienne 2013, Milan 2010, 2011, Lift-Geneva 2010, 2013), and founded What if?, a design for debate bureau, in 2014. The latter accompanies public consultation missions (for ethics commissions), internal debates (for INRA research labs), or explores major issues not addressed by politics (including the Politique-Fiction.fr project, 2017 and CrispRfood.eu, 2018).
Currently undertaking a residency at Gaîté-Lyrique, a cultural establishment of the City of Paris dedicated to arts/technologies/society issues, he is also a lecturer and notably talked at the Centre-Pompidou and TEDx.
maxmollon.com

RECHERCHE
Doctorate PSL-SACRe / EnsadLab, Spécalité Design.
Supervision | Annie Gentès, Co-dir. : Emmanuel Mahé
Duration | nov 2012 – Soutenance : 20 dec 2019
Discipline | Design + SIC (Information and communication sciences).

Title | Designing for Debate – How to craft dissonant artefacts and their communication situations so as to open spaces for mutual contestation (agonism) and the expression of marginal voices (dissensus).

Summary for a generalist audience | Design for debate is an unconventional design practice that connects worlds that do not talk to each other. It is like bringing back an archive from the future, putting it at the centre of a table and starting a debate on the world to which this object belongs – a world that puts ours in dissonance. This study, led by the practice of design, is based on the analysis of 6 ‘design to debate’ projects that I developed to support the practice of an ethics commission and a research laboratory (between 2013 and 2017).
My first thesis is that the expression ‘design for debate’ may refer to a set of practices – including Critical, Speculative and Design Fiction – which have the same objective, to foster ‘contestation’ in society (whether mutual or collective). My second thesis deals with consensus, this unfortunate habit that gives priority to the opinions of the majority, to the detriment of minority voices. To thwart consensus, I propose to use “dissonant” design artifacts that entice us to react and question social norms. But I also propose to design the conditions of the debate. To do this, this thesis delivers methods to design and to research, and invites to think about new roles for designers who wish to participate in the fabric of democracy.

Jury :
• Guest: Bourganel Rémy | Independent consultant
• Jury member: Disalvo Carl | Ph.D., Associate Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology
• Supervisor: Gentès Annie | Ph.D., Professor, CodesignLab, Telecom Paris
• Examiner: Kogan Anne-France | Ph.D., Full Professor, Université de Rennes 2
• Co-Supervisor: Mahé Emmanuel | Ph.D., Head of Research, ENSAD – PSL Research Université
• Jury member: Mazé Ramia | Ph.D., Professor of Design Practices, Aalto University
• Examiner: Zacklad Manuel | Ph.D., Full Professor, Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers

♦ See ›› publications & CV or academia
◊ See ›› profile non-académique (FR)

Sometimes described as a futurist specialised in itching hair, Max Mollon probes f(r)ictional futures, brings back various conversation pieces from it, and confronts them to ethical and social debates. Max is also a designer, teacher at Science-Po, researcher at PSL/EnsadLab and member of the scientific committee of the Design and Innovative Public Action Research Chair (École du design de Nantes 2017).
His works have been dedicated to design fiction since 2010 and will be punctuated by 7 years of doctoral research in 2019—a thesis strongly anchored in the practice of design. They allowed him to create in 2017 a mensual seminar, the first third-place of participatory research on these practices in France (the Design Fiction Club).
Trained in Switzerland (HEAD-Geneva, 2010), he gradually moved away from R&D (OrangeLabs, Bell-Labs) and international design exhibitions (St-Etienne 2013, Milan 2010, 2011, Lift-Geneva 2010, 2013), and founded What if?, a design for debate bureau, in 2014. The latter accompanies public consultation missions (for ethics commissions), internal debates (for INRA research labs), or explores major issues not addressed by politics (including the Politique-Fiction.fr project, 2017 and CrispRfood.eu, 2018).
Currently undertaking a residency at Gaîté-Lyrique, a cultural establishment of the City of Paris dedicated to arts/technologies/society issues, he is also a lecturer and notably talked at the Centre-Pompidou and TEDx.
maxmollon.com

RECHERCHE
Doctorate PSL-SACRe / EnsadLab, Spécalité Design.
Supervision | Annie Gentès, Co-dir. : Emmanuel Mahé
Duration | nov 2012 – Soutenance : 20 dec 2019
Discipline | Design + SIC (Information and communication sciences).

Title | Designing for Debate – How to craft dissonant artefacts and their communication situations so as to open spaces for mutual contestation (agonism) and the expression of marginal voices (dissensus).

Summary for a generalist audience | Design for debate is an unconventional design practice that connects worlds that do not talk to each other. It is like bringing back an archive from the future, putting it at the centre of a table and starting a debate on the world to which this object belongs – a world that puts ours in dissonance. This study, led by the practice of design, is based on the analysis of 6 ‘design to debate’ projects that I developed to support the practice of an ethics commission and a research laboratory (between 2013 and 2017).
My first thesis is that the expression ‘design for debate’ may refer to a set of practices – including Critical, Speculative and Design Fiction – which have the same objective, to foster ‘contestation’ in society (whether mutual or collective). My second thesis deals with consensus, this unfortunate habit that gives priority to the opinions of the majority, to the detriment of minority voices. To thwart consensus, I propose to use “dissonant” design artifacts that entice us to react and question social norms. But I also propose to design the conditions of the debate. To do this, this thesis delivers methods to design and to research, and invites to think about new roles for designers who wish to participate in the fabric of democracy.

Jury :
• Guest: Bourganel Rémy | Independent consultant
• Jury member: Disalvo Carl | Ph.D., Associate Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology
• Supervisor: Gentès Annie | Ph.D., Professor, CodesignLab, Telecom Paris
• Examiner: Kogan Anne-France | Ph.D., Full Professor, Université de Rennes 2
• Co-Supervisor: Mahé Emmanuel | Ph.D., Head of Research, ENSAD – PSL Research Université
• Jury member: Mazé Ramia | Ph.D., Professor of Design Practices, Aalto University
• Examiner: Zacklad Manuel | Ph.D., Full Professor, Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers

Domaines de recherche : design

 

 

Publications

Mollon, M. (2016), Conflictual design artefacts reveal vertical power relationships (work in progress). Presented at the Intersectional perspectives on design, politics and power symposium. School of Arts and Communication (K3), Malmö University, Malmö (Sweden). (Nov. 14-15th). – http://bit.ly/paperDesignInteresect

Mollon, M. (2016), Dissensus : pour un design critique situé, en dehors du musée (“Dissensus: for a situated critical design, out of museums”). Presented at ARD#11 (Ateliers de la Recherche en Design), ALBA (Académie Libanaise des Beaux-Arts), Beyrouth (Nov. 09-12th). – http://bit.ly/paper-ARD11

Gourlet, P., & Mollon, M. (2015). The three stances of the designer in a research team (pp. 1-14), Presented at the 11th European Academy of Design conference (EAD): The Value of Design Research (Paris). (Apr. 22nd) – http://bit.ly/3StancesEAD

Gentes, A., & Mollon, M. (2015). Critical Design: a delicate balance between the thrill of the uncanny and the interrogation of the unknown. in D. Bihanic (Ed.), Empowering Users through Design: Interdisciplinary Studies and Combined Approaches for Technological Products and Services (pp. 79–101). Switzerland: Springer Verlag.– http://bit.ly/uncannyBihanic

Mollon, M., & Gentes, A. (2014). The Rhetoric of Design for Debate: triggering conversation with an “uncanny enough” artefact (pp. 1–13). In the proceedings of the Design Research Society International Consortium (DRS), Umeå, Sweden. (June 18th).– http://bit.ly/DRS14-uncanny

Expositions

MOLLON Max, Mime, présentation à l’occasion des conférences LIFT Genève 2013, CICG Genève, Suisse, du 6 au 8 février 2013.

MOLLON Max, Dog and Bone, le téléphone affectif, Biennale du design de Saint Etienne 2013, exposition

«Les androïdes rêvent-ils de cochons électriques ? », commissariat : Marie-Haude Caraës, scénographie : Adrien Rovero, Cité du Design de Saint Etienne, du 14 au 31 mars 2013.

BOY Jérémy, EC[H]O poignées, développé pour le concours de design « Orange vous confie les clés », en collaboration avec Martin LeTiec (http://lecollectif.orange.fr/articles/echo-poignees/), 2012.

DE BIE Martin, GUENET Melissa et Max MOLLON, Mime, développé pour le concours de design « Orange vous confie les clés » (http://lecollectif.orange.fr/articles/mime/), 2012.

Communications

Mollon, M. (2016). Introducing my work. In Anna Bernagozzi, Les Rendez-vous Du Design. At ENSAD, Product Design master program, Paris. (Dec. 14th).

Pollet, J., Guy, E., et Mollon, M. (2016). Round table. in Emile De Visscher (Ed.), Pratiques de design obliques (“Oblique design practices”). Conference cycle: Parole au design, Prospective #3. At Petite salle du Centre Pompidou, Paris. (Dec. 8th). – http://bit.ly/VisscherPompidou

Mollon, M. (2016). De produire des réponses à chercher des questions (“From producing answers to delivering questions”). in Anne-Catherine Suter-Meister (Ed.), Chercheur-Designer : un “vrai” métier ?. Focus Recherche Design. Presented at HEAD – Geneva, Switzerland. (Mar. 7th). – http://bit.ly/talkHEAD

Mollon, M. (2016). Expérimenter des futurs socialement situés (“Experimenting socially situated futures”). in Léo Coutellec, Sebastian Moser and Paul-Loup Weil-Dubuc, (Eds), Anticipations research seminary. Presented at Espace Éthique Île-de-France, CHU St-Louis, Paris. (Fev. 16th). – http://bit.ly/EREIDFseminar5

Mollon, M. (2015). Designer pour faire réfléchir : état de mes recherches sur la téléprésence (“Designing to trigger reflection: state of my telepresence researches”). In Cécile Martin (teacher). Presented at Université Paris-8, Master 2 Numérique : enjeux & technologies (NET), Paris. (Dec. 15th). – http://bit.ly/talkParis8

Mollon, M. (2015). Spéculation et étrangeté, une méthode de design
 pour sonder l’acceptabilité (“Speculation and the uncanny, design approaches to probe the acceptable”). Presented in Journée i3 : Théorie et méthodes de la conception. At Mines ParisTech, Paris. (Dec. 10th). – http://bit.ly/talk-i3

Mollon, M. (2015). Audience Construction & The Uncanny. Presented in Tobie Kerridge (Ed.). Speculation as Design Research. At Goldsmith Design Festival, Goldsmith University, London. (Sept. 4th) – http://bit.ly/talkGDF

Mollon, M. (2014). Design for debate, applied to the case of Telepresence. Presented at The 2nd Summer University of the ICCA Excellence Laboratory, Moulin d’Andé, Andé, France (Sept. 19th).

Bougourd, C., Billa-Deroussy, P., Mollon, M. (2014). Méthodes de design et méthodes de recherche en design, Table Ronde. in Ioana Ocnarescu (Ed.). Presented at Design en Recherche – Journée d’étude #1– Faut-il rédiger les méthodes de la recherche en design ?, ENSCI, Paris (Oct. 2nd). – http://bit.ly/DER-journee1

Mollon, M. (2014). Introduction to Auger’s Speculative Design. In Emeline Brulé & Sylvia Fredriksson (Eds.), (pp. 1–28). Presented at the REWU#14, Gaité-Lyrique, Paris (June 06th). – http://bit.ly/rewu14

Bourganel, R., Labrune, JB., Ocnarescu, I. C., Mollon, M., Brulé, E., Boy, J., Gourlet, P., Eveillard, L., & Dervieux, F. (2014). Séminaire design recherche. E. Mahé (Ed.), (pp. 1–51). Presented at the EnsadLab Seminar, Paris (Apr. 8th). – http://bit.ly/EnsadD-R

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