– SiO´s biggest problem is the lack of communication between the residents internally, but also between the residents and SiO itself. Alice Andreoli, graduate by the Oslo School of Architecture and Design.
– My goal is for SiO-students to have a safer and more social everyday life than they do now. I think the problem can be solved through improved communication, says Alice Andreoli (26).
The ambitious Italian design student finished her master´s degree in interaction and service design by the Oslo School of Architecture and Design (AHO) this month. Her dissertation is about the Foundation of Student Life in Oslo (SiO), an organization Andreoli means struggles with several problems.
– I lived at Anker Studentbolig when I first arrived here in Norway, and that is where I got the idea for the project. During that period I learned a lot about the residents´ needs. When I contacted SiO and explained my idea, they were quick to admit that they needed help. Therefore I have designed a solution I think is both effective and cheap, says Andreoli.
She has based her project on so-called service design, which is about improving the contact between companies and their customers.
– SiO´s biggest problem is the lack of communication between the residents internally, but also between the residents and SiO itself. To feel good, people need to have a feeling of belonging and safety, and a big part of that is socializing and networking. In addition SiO needs to show that they care. As of today, most people live in student villages because of the price and not the comfort.
To further understand the situation for the SiO-residents, Andreoli did some field work at Bjerke student house. She also visited several of the other student villages that belong to SiO.
– I moved into Bjerke studenthus for a month, and in the common area I put up a notice board on which I encouraged the students to contribute with feedback concerning their living situation. The response was enormous, and most of it showed that people were displeased.
Goes for cell phones and internet
The student of design has gathered all the suggestions in a package called «SiO: Get in touch». The package consists of a series of suggestions of change that will contribute to make the housing units feel less like institutions and more like homes.
– Among other things, I´ve made an application for cell phones that´s called «My flatmates», that can be used to send messages free of charge to the people you live with. In addition I´ve developed a homepage where there is a guest book and a forum where the residents can post suggestions. Other applications include a «peoplefinder» where you can search for other residents, and a «flea market» which can be used to exchange possessions. These simple and cheap moves make it possible for the students to create their own homes, which contributes to the feeling of openness and belonging.
Nina Nystad, leader for renting in SiO, thinks Andreolis´ suggestions are interesting. The organization now wants to see whether they want to apply some of them.
– Alice´s project is really exciting. We have been involved in the process ever since she contacted us for well over a year ago, and she has many interesting things to teach us about information and communication. Her suggestions are very specific, and they seem very practicable. The leaders for the Student Housing will soon meet to discuss our further plans, she says.