Taylor Haig: Totally Dundee

Taylor Haig (now Thrive) was invited to advise the Dundee Partnership on using a Total Place approach to redesign its services. A Total Place inquiry is based on asking questions, collaborating to find answers and using these insights to create change at a systemic level. It works across government and authority silos, agencies, community and voluntary groups.

Within one particular area of Totally Dundee, a pathfinder project was put in place in a defined locality, for young people targeted by the Scottish Government’s More Choices, More Chances initiative.

In collaboration with fellow DJCAD Master of Design for Services graduates, Sharyn Farnan, Jon Gill and Sarah Griffiths; Linsey worked with Lucy Kimbell of Taylor Haig (now of the Young Foundation) during the ‘discovery phase’ of Totally Dundee, using quick creative research and engagement to reveal the ‘as is’ around young people not in employment, education or training.

The Be the One project sought to ask these young people, ‘Who’s the One?’, i.e. the one person in their lives that makes a difference. Through engaging them on the street, listening to their experiences of how services were supporting or failing them, and documenting and visualizing their stories; these insights were then shared within a Be the One workshop. Alongside the young people, representatives from services involved with youth work were invited to further build a picture of these young local citizens’ lived experiences.

The workshop culminated in an unplanned, yet powerful moment when an employee from Careers Scotland was awarded the first ‘I’m the One’ badge, after being previously named as an impactful individual by one of the young people on the street. This moment, and the new insights, relationships and connections made helped to pave the way for identifying further possibilities for innovation within services for young people in the city.