Join the Conversation

Cheryl Heller, Chair, MFA Design for Social Innovation at SVA
Mark Randall, Founder, Design Ignites Change

Nancye Green, Chief Design Officer, The Medicines Company
Lee-Sean Huang, Cofounder, Foossa

24 January 2017 : NYC

Ledia Andrawes
Ledia is a strategist, researcher and designer. She setup ThinkPlace in Nairobi and worked with organisations on more human-centered services for low-income groups. Ledia’s work has won two international design awards and she is currently working on her PhD — focused on the intangible value of design thinking in social programs.

Alexa Bednarz
Gates Foundation
As a Senior Portfolio Manager, Alexa oversees a portfolio of investments at the Gates Foundation, with a specific focus on the application of Human-Centered Design to achieve improved health outcomes for the most marginalized.

Zoé Bezpalko
As Design and Impact Lead, Zoé supports the creation of innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing social and environmental challenges.

Marc Brackett
Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence
Marc is Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and Professor in the Child Study Center at Yale University. His grant-funded research focuses on the role of emotional intelligence in learning, decision making, relationship quality, wellbeing, performance, and organizational climate.

Maggie Breslin
The Patient Revolution
Maggie spent over a decade as a designer and researcher in the healthcare space, including 7+ years at the Mayo Clinic’s Center for Innovation before becoming Co-director of The Patient Revolution, an action and advocacy movement for careful and kind patient care.

Sundaa Bridgett-Jones
Rockefeller Foundation
Sundaa Bridgett-Jones joined The Rockefeller Foundation in 2012 and has over 20 years of experience designing and executing high-impact initiatives in support of economic and social development.

Jesper Christiansen
Nesta, UK
Senior Programme Manager, Innovation Skills team. Prior to joining Nesta, Jesper was Head of Research at Danish cross-public innovation unit MindLab.

Matt Enstice
Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus
President & CEO of the BNMC, a non-profit that supports world-class clinical care, research and educational institutions on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. BNMC is furthering economic growth and building a thriving Buffalo community.

Robert Fabricant
Design Impact Group
As Co-Founder of Dalberg’s DIG, Robert helps bring human-centered design and innovation services to clients looking for new, creative approaches to breakthrough innovation and expanded collaborations in the field of social impact and international development.

Leetha Filderman
President and principal architect of PopTech’s initiatives, which support cross-sector collaborative projects and train promising innovators and scientists through the Social Innovation and Science Fellows programs.

Heather Fleming
Catapult Design
Catapult is a product and service firm with expertise in human-centered design for low-income or marginalized communities, focusing on rural electrification, water purification and transport, food security, and improved health.

Lori Melichar Gadkari
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Lori Melichar, a labor economist, is a director at the Foundation where she focuses on discovering, exploring and learning from cutting edge ideas with the potential to help create a Culture of Health. She is also the host of the Foundation’s Pioneering Ideas podcast.
Nancye Green
Chief Design Officer, The Medicines Company and Founding Partner, Donovan/Green, specializing in experience and environmental design, information architecture, communications, and design strategy.

Rosanne Haggerty
Community Solutions
An internationally recognized leader in developing innovative strategies to end homelessness and strengthen communities, Rosanne is a MacArthur Foundation Fellow and winner of the Cooper Hewitt National Design Award.

Cheryl Heller
Design for Social Innovation, SVA
Founding Chair, of the first MFA in Social Design and founder of the design lab CommonWise. Senior Fellow at the Babson Social Innovation Lab and recipient of the AIGA medal for her contribution to the field of design.

Yianice Hernandez
NYC Department of Health
Director, Healthy Living by Design, Bureau of Chronic Disease Prevention and Tobacco Control, Yianice leads initiatives that amplify the role of architecture and urban planning to reduce the burden of chronic disease.
Lee-Sean Huang
Cofounder and creative director of Foossa, a community-centered design consultancy, incorporating storytelling, user experience, and service design to build more inclusive, participatory, and resilient communities.

Kristin Hughes
Carnegie Mellon University
As an Associate Professor at CMU’s School of Design, Kristin and her colleagues have developed interdisciplinary courses that blend design with informal learning, health literacy, and more recently, public policy.

Tracy Johnson
Gates Foundation
Senior Program Officer, User Experience & Innovation, at Gates, Tracy has developed innovative research and program agendas on behalf of Fortune 500 clients as well as in international development.

Kippy Joseph
Rockefeller Foundation
Associate Director of Innovation and Program officer at The Rockefeller Foundation where she focuses on innovation. Kippy designs and leads an integrated approach of grant-making and internal capability-building.

Anne LaFond
John Snow, Inc.
Director of the Center for Health Information, Monitoring and Evaluation, Anne leads global health research, monitoring and evaluation and program design to maximize the use of evidence and learning in addressing health challenges for people in low income settings.

Laurie Leitch, Ph.D.
Threshold GlobalWorks
Laurie is dedicated to cultivating the social dimension of resilience in individuals and within communities, enterprises and systems with Threshold’s neuroscience-based curriculum, Social Resilience Model (SRM).

Professor Yongqi Lou
Tongji University
Dean of the College of Design and Innovation, and one of the first designers in China to connect social innovation and sustainable design thinking with rural development.

Chelsea Mauldin
Public Policy Lab
As Director, Chelsea leads the design of better public policy and public services for low-income and at-risk Americans.

Jonathan McKay
A mobile technology specialist with a background in design and user experience, Jonathan works as Director of Partnerships for, a non-profit technology firm that delivers essential information and vital services to vulnerable and marginalised communities across the globe.

Stephen Morrison
MFA Candidate, DSI
Stephen brings to DSI his love of working with diverse, multidisciplinary teams to expand understanding and discover surprising ways we could positively impact our communities by design.

Michael Murphy
MASS Design Group
As Co-founder and Executive Director, Michael designs, builds, and advocates for buildings that improve health and strengthen communities. He has overseen the expansion of MASS into ten countries and three continents.

Lisa Nugent
Lisa has over 25 years of experience in building design innovation teams in consumer, medical device, and biotech industries. In 2013, Lisa joined Amgen to create the Customer Experience group and deliver patient-oriented support programs and novel drug delivery devices to support improved outcomes for patients around the world.

Tina Park
Through the New York-based design studio she co-founded, Tina works with clients to improve healthcare experiences for their patients and consumers. In 2008, she helped launch the design research team for Johnson & Johnson’s Global Strategic Design Office.

Jake Porway
Jake founded DataKind to help non-profit organizations visualize and more effectively use their data. He previously worked at the New York Times Research & Development group, leading machine learning and computer vision projects.

Doug Powell
As a Distinguished Designer at IBM, Doug directs the program to scale design and design thinking across the global tech company. He is a lecturer, commentator and thought leader on design issues, and served as the national president of AIGA, the professional association for design.

Jeralyn Powell
MFA Candidate, DSI
A native of Memphis, TN, Jeralyn has been working in the field of health communications and marketing for over 7 years. Her work continues to concentrate on the use of digital marketing techniques in health promotion and disease prevention.

Karen Proctor
Harbour Workshop
Karen is a nationally recognized leader in the social impact space. She advises corporate CEOs, non-profit, and philanthropic chief executives, as well as federal and state senior level officials.

Mark Randall
Mark develops strategy and communications for non-profit and civic organizations. In 2009, Worldstudio launched Design Ignites Change to support architects and designers who want to make a difference in their communities.

Kyle Reis
Currently Senior Director of Global Data Services and East Coast Representative for TechSoup, Kyle previously spent more than a quarter century at the Ford Foundation. Photo by Ryan Lash

Evan Thomas
Portland State University
Evan A Thomas, PhD, PE, MPH is an Associate Professor and Director of the Sweet (Sustainable Water, Energy and Environmental Technologies) Laboratory, and a Faculty Fellow in the Institute for Sustainable Solutions at Portland State University.

Sara Tollefson
Director of Impact, D-Rev. Helps D-Rev’s team and its partners determine whether intended goals are being achieved, and project effectiveness. Before D-Rev, Sara was a litigator at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP in New York, where she led efforts at both the Legal Aid Society’s Community Development Program and the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Sadie Whittaker
Sadie Whittaker, PhD has over 12 years of experience in the biotech industry, in clinical development and external affairs, communication, and advocacy. In late 2015, Sadie launched ScienceOne, a strategic consultancy focusing on external/medical affairs and the generation of engagement, communication, and advocacy strategies for members of the healthcare community.

Gill Wildman
Plot London
Gill provides design, strategy and development interventions to clients such as Nokia, BBC and Participle. She founded Upstarter, a design-led incubator created to envision and execute urban futures.

How to know if you’re using social design.
Depending on the type of work you do, you may use different names for social design, such as Human Centered Design (HCD), Service Design, Social Innovation Design or even Design Thinking. You may alternatively be engaging in activities that are part of the social design process, such as collaborative processes or citizen science. In other words, you may be using the social design process and calling it something else.