In October 2012, I was approached by ID professor Anijo Mathew regarding a series of workshops funded by the Urban Communications Foundation to engage local policymakers in participatory design methods. I was excited by the opportunity and, despite my concerns about working during school, I stepped forward to help out.
The grant supported three “Designing Policy” workshops on different technologies to be held in three different cities: urban screens and surfaces in Chicago, networked objects and artifacts in New York and technologies of the body in Boston. These workshops would bring together policymakers, technologists, scholars, entrepreneurs and designers to codesign plans for the city centered on the future of ubiquitous computing.
I worked with Anijo and Laura Forlano to develop materials for the execution of the workshops including the refinement of a large group worksheet, design values cards and prototyping cards for steering table conversations and a stack of design methods cards for each participant for home/office use after the workshop.
After completion of the workshops, I designed a toolkit with Laura and Anijo. This toolkit was intended to help future designers facilitate similar workshops and provide important context around the issues tackled in the workshop. In addition to the print layout, I also created the illustration and worked with the printer to execute a complex wrapped accordian fold while staying within a limited budget.
Unfortunately, I did not design the final report for the Urban Communications Foundation due to scheduling conflicts. I did design photo spreads that documented the workshop activity for inclusion in the final report.
To learn more about the project and download the toolkit, visit http://designingpolicytoolkit.org/