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Title: A nation's visual language : nation branding and the visual identity of contemporary Malaysia
Author: Gan, D. S. S.
Awarding Body: Nottingham Trent University
Current Institution: Nottingham Trent University
Date of Award: 2011
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This research explores the role graphic design can play in the national branding of emergent nations, and takes the multiracial, multicultural state of Malaysia as the principal object of study. Contemporary Malaysian society and culture are reviewed in the context of present views of globalization and postcolonialism, and the phenomenon of ‘glocalization’ emerges as an important one in Malaysia. A variety of design research methods are used to identify the nature of graphic design practice in Malaysia, including the examination of the national government framework of design practices and networks, the design-led method of cultural probes, and participatory observation within several Malaysian design agencies. A questionnaire survey was also carried out with a sample group of design practitioners and interviews conducted with key professional design practitioners in the country and members of the Malaysia Design Council. These methods reveal that the professional and personal outlook of local designers is highly influenced by government policies and the support systems provided by government departments. The findings lead to reflective practice aimed at developing graphic design processes that enable designers involved in national identity projects to better understand and communicate the required historical and cultural features. The outcome of the reflective practice is A Nation’s Visual Language, a pilot handbook and Visual Identity Guide for Malaysian national branding, which can be further developed by others and adapted to the needs of other emergent nations. A major feature of the reflective process is the testing of the handbook by student designers, and discussion of the results with professional practitioners.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available