TED Spotlight: Teaching Design for Change

26 Mar

Being an designer or artist has typically been viewed as a risky, undervalued profession, and the term “struggling artist” has been used freely to describe many people whose careers fall into that category. However, as we are beginning to witness and sense the transforming landscape of the economy, the world of work, and positive social change, the abilities to be creative, artistic, and use design thinking are increasingly sought after as a much-needed skills in society. A Fast Company article titled “Design Thinking… What Is That?” explains further:

Although Design is most often used to describe an object or end result, Design in its most effective form is a process, an action, a verb not a noun. A protocol for solving problems and discovering new opportunities. Techniques and tools differ and their effectiveness are arguable but the core of the process stays the same. It’s taken years of slogging through Design = high style to bring us full circle to the simple truth about design thinking. That it is a most powerful tool and when used effectively, can be the foundation for driving a brand or business forward.

Emily and the airstream she traveled in to present to schools on design!

I first heard about Project H, a very cool firm that uses design to change the world, when I stumbled upon an article talking about founder, Emily Pilloton, an alumni of the rival high school of my own school in the Bay Area. She actually visited her alma mater when she traveled around the US visiting 25 high schools and colleges to talk about how design can change the world! She is a great example of someone who is living an interesting path in her life and career. Learn more about design thinking and Project H in this TED talk she gave last year:

I really would love to hear people’s input and opinions on these talks! Especially if you have a creative mind or are interested in design, let me know what thoughts this talk brings up for you!


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