Fostering Literacy on Ohio State Campus

Students designed and built a little free library (LFL) installed in a strategic location on the Ohio State campus. The LFL movement is a book exchange service intended to foster literacy and connect people in the community. The goal of this project was to provide the university community (students, staff, and faculty) with free access to books or other kinds of literature. The LFLs were also to serve the purpose of dynamizing the campus’ underused green spaces. Students were asked to think about and design the whole service ecosystem. They were also expected to provide playful experience and include mechanisms that supported community building.



• Capacity to gather insightful information through research
• Capacity to think from a product-service-system perspective
• Capacity to envision relevant user experience
• Capacity to present a product-service-system concept
• Capacity to learn from critics
• Execution of the full-scale model



Step 1 – Place characterization
• Characterize campus spaces and select a location to install an LFL.
Step 2 – Concept development
• Develop an LFL product-service system structuring the touchpoints, user experience, community building mechanisms, and management principles.
Step 3 – First review
• Formally present a concept (in the form of a service system map) to the University Libraries Outreach Department. Reflect on the received feedback and further improve the concept.
Step 4 – Building and technical document
• Build an LFL full-scale model to be installed on campus. Prepare technical documentation to explain the concept.
Step 5 – In situ installation
• Install the LFL in the chosen location.



• LFL critical case study
• Place characterization
• Service system map
• Full-scale prototype installed in situ


Sebastien Proulx


Spring 2018

Class Number

Design 3151