May 15, 2013
Our Global Public Interest Design 100–introduced yesterday and sponsored by Autodesk–hail from 35 countries, those being Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Malawi, Myanmar, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Palestine, Peru, Portugal, Rwanda, South Africa, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States, and Vietnam. And many of the individuals and teams represented are working in multiple other countries, creating a truly global reach. This is thus a first-of-its-kind global view of the field, building on our U.S.-based version of the Public Interest Design 100, released in December.
Click here to view the full Global Public Interest Design 100 or click here for an interactive version, both online at PublicInterestDesign.org. Special thanks again to our uber-talented designer, Megan Jett; web developer Jessie Canon; research associate Gilad Meron; as well as our cohort of nominators and the Curry Stone Design Prize for bringing many of these candidates to our attention.
May 14, 2013
PublicInterestDesign.org, with the generous sponsorship of Autodesk, is pleased to introduce the first-of-its-kind Global Public Interest Design 100. This special global edition builds on our inaugural Public Interest Design 100, which showcased only U.S.-based individuals and teams when it was released in December. Today, we take a broader, global look. Once again, many are architects and designers, but they are also crucial communicators, connectors, educators, and funders with no design training whatsoever. Instead, they are crucial advocates.
Lists of this sort, of course, are inherently imperfect and subjective as well as far more representative than comprehensive. But they are also useful in shining a light on unseen leaders and unheard voices. Between this list of 146 and the inaugural list of 150, nearly 300 people have been recognized–and we are certain there are many more working hard each day to make the world a better place, by design.
Click here to view the Global Public Interest Design 100 infographic, online at PublicInterestDesign.org, or click here for our interactive version. Special thanks to our uber-talented designer, Megan Jett; web developer Jessie Canon; research associate Gilad Meron; as well as our cohort of nominators and the Curry Stone Design Prize for bringing many of these candidates to our attention.
May 13, 2013
Inhabitat, a leading sustainable design blog, interviewed its own architecture editor, Bridgette Meinhold, last week on her new book, Urgent Architecture: 40 Sustainable Housing Solutions for a Changing World, which is well worth a read.
When Meinhold heard about the earthquake in Haiti in 2010 and the massive devastation it caused, she wanted to help, and was drawn to start investigating different options for temporary shelters and disaster relief housing. This exploration gradually broadened to a larger focus on design for disaster-preparedness; seeking out what type of shelters can best withstand earthquakes, hurricanes, rising sea levels and tornados.
Click here to watch Inhabitat’s video interview with Urgent Architecture author Bridgette Meinhold, online at Inhabitat.com.
May 13, 2013
The AIA‘s Architect Magazine last week profiled an initiative it has sponsored, called the Public Interest Design Institute (PIDI), launched by Design Corps in 2011 to promote the Social/Economic/Environmental Design (SEED) Network. The piece, titled “How Public Interest Design Can Pull Its Own Weight,” is subtitled “Through two-day institutes, SEED Network co-founders have committed to training 800 people per year in public interest design.”
It doesn’t matter where the term “public interest design” came from—it only matters where it’s going. That’s what Design Corps founder Bryan Bell wants people to know about the Public Interest Design Institute, which is heading to Mexico. Bell, just back from a planning trip there for the first international institute location, says he’s ready to take the institute overseas. A long-time fledgling movement, public interest design is now coming into its own, and it’s building a critical mass both here and abroad.
Click here to read “How Public Interest Design Can Pull Its Own Weight,” online at ArchitectMagazine.com.
May 10, 2013
The honorees of the 2013 National Design Awards were announced yesterday by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, and, as usual, it’s an inspiring group. “First launched at the White House in 2000 as an official project of the White House Millennium Council, the annual Awards program celebrates design as a vital humanistic tool in shaping the world, and seeks to increase national awareness of the impact of design through education initiatives.” This year’s honorees include many with a deep commitment and record of achievement in public interest design, as their profiles beautifully illustrate–with a special shout-out to our friends Jeanne Gang, Paula Scher, Jake Barton, and everyone at TED.
Lifetime Achievement: James Wines
Design Mind: Michael Sorkin
Corporate & Institutional Achievement: TED
Architecture Design: Studio Gang Architects
Communication Design: Paula Scher
Fashion Design: Behnaz Sarafpour
Interaction Design: Local Projects
Interior Design: Aidlin Darling Design
Landscape Architecture: Margie Ruddick
Product Design: NewDealDesign
May 10, 2013
The Bruner Foundation this week announced the honorees of its biennial prize, the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence. The award includes a $50,000 Gold Medal and one or more $10,000 Silver Medals, of which there were four this year–including the Congo Street Initiative in Dallas, Texas; the Louisville Waterfront Park in Louisville, Ky.; The Steelyard in Providence, R.I.; and the Via Verde housing development in the South Bronx. The top honor went to Inspiration Kitchen, based on the west side of Chicago, and introduced as follows (excerpted from a Metropolis Magazine blog series):
Founded by Lisa Nigro, a former Chicago police officer, Inspiration Corporation offers employment, housing, and support services to help those affected by homelessness and poverty move toward self-reliance. Under its aegis, Inspiration Kitchens offers an intensive 13-week job training program that enables homeless individuals, ex-offenders, and low-income persons to obtain employment in the food industry. The organization has provided a restaurant-style meals program since 1989 and operates another restaurant and food service training program in the city’s uptown neighborhood.
Click here to learn more about the 2013 honorees of the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence, online at BrunerFoundation.org. Note: In the coming months, the Bruner Foundation will prepare a detailed case study for each award winner that will be published in a book and as online.
May 9, 2013
Continuing our coverage of Design Affects‘ breakthrough piece, “15 Social Impact Designers Reveal Their Career Defining Moment,” today we profile Charles Newman of Afritekt. In his response, Newman explained:
All design has a social impact. From an effective tool that improves access to basic needs – to a painting that simply makes one think, all design has the potential to improve lives in numerous ways. I first became interested in improving lives while sitting at my desk job in New York City. I was picking out curtains for wealthy clients…and realized that this was not what I was made for. A few weeks later I stumbled upon Engineers Without Borders. I found my way to Africa and haven’t looked back since. I am challenged, I am learning, I am working. This is what I was made for.
Click here to read more of Design Affects’ “15 Social Impact Designers Reveal Their Career Defining Moment,” online at DesignAffects.com.
May 9, 2013
One of our favorite projects in the world, having visited it, is the Umubano Primary School in Kigali, Rwanda, by MASS Design Group. It’s no surprise, once you see it, that the project has been short-listed for the 2013 Aga Khan Award for Architecture, a $1,000,000 prize.
The school’s seven buildings house nine classrooms and a library on a sloping site. Unique settings for education have been created to occur within a mix of interior rooms, exterior teaching areas–some of which are covered by sloping roofs–and terraced play spaces for children. Local materials such as brick and bamboo are used, and shading and natural ventilation is relied upon to reduce energy consumption. In the classrooms, light from clerestories above balances the light from windows. Curricula have been specifically developed to provide quality education for over 300 vulnerable or orphaned children. Adult evening classes are promoted and serve to improve literacy within the wider community.
Click here to learn more about the Umubano Primary School, online at AKDN.org.
May 8, 2013
The Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute and the Make It Right Foundation have issued a $250,000 challenge for manufacturers to design a product for the affordable housing market, which is both safe for human and environmental health and is designed for re-use. The deadline for submissions is June 30, 2013.
No more “waste” for incinerators, oceans, or landfills. We’re asking innovators to rethink common materials–such as PVC–and come up with revolutionary new products that can meet or beat conventional products on the basis of price, performance, availability and “eco-effectiveness.”
Click here to learn more about the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Challenge, online at C2CCertified.org.
May 8, 2013
Continuing our coverage of shortlisted projects for the 2013 Aga Khan Award for Architecture, today we profile the Reconstruction of Nahr el-Bared Refugee Camp in Tripoli, Lebanon. Leading the design were the United Nations Relief & Works Agency (UNRWA) and the Nahr el-Bared Reconstruction Commission for Civil Action & Studies.
Reconstructing a camp of 27,000 refugees which was 95% destroyed during the 2007 war involved a planning effort with the entire community, followed by a series of eight construction phases. Limited land and the exigency of recreating physical and social fabrics were primary considerations. Established in 1948, the camp followed the extended-family pattern and building typology of the refugees’ villages. In a layout where roads provided light and ventilation, the goal was to increase non-built areas from 11% to 35%. It was achieved by giving each building an independent structural system allowing for vertical expansion up to four floors on a reduced footprint.
Click here to learn more about the Reconstruction of Nahr el-Bared Refugee Camp, online at AKDN.org.