The ecological issues require inclusive transdisciplinary cooperation. A city lab provides a ‘safe’ and tangible ground for experimentation and the development of the urgently needed individual unique new knowledge, where all participants are experts and amateurs at the same time. Because ecological issues affect social problems as well, it means that the process is just as important as the outcome. The process builds social capital, glues a society, and creates a wider understanding of the others. Designers take on new roles in these changing design practices and have an essential function within a city lab in their expert position as well as their Pro-Am position.
Emerging fluid boundaries can create urgently needed new knowledge, if they bears in mind a critical framework that responds to what is otherwise a hollowing out of the professional standard. The response of design education is urgent, as it should implement ecological literacy into the curricula and educate for expert designers with ecological literacy in their DNA, as well as a critical framework that allows future designers to critically operate in the fluid boundaries of the profession and be an expert as well as a Pro-Am.
This critical framework uses the ‘learn to unlearn’ pedagogy because it contests the embedded knowledge and routines that prevent attempts to break out of existing boxes within both the professional and Pro-Am contexts.