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DSI Paul Polak’s Work Inspires a Powerful Thesis

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The Story of a Class with Big Ambition and Broad Reach

In DSI’s second semester, the Communication Design class is where students first put the principles of communication to use. A combination of theory, inspiration and process put into practice, the class is billed by DSI chair Cheryl Heller as “…messy, like real life.” Each year, students choose from one of five clients that have been carefully…

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You Can Come Home Again: Alums Return for a Special Lecture Night

Alumni Pragya Mishra, Josh Treuhaft, Rhea Rakshit, Sebastian Barrera and Akshata Malhotra returned to DSI last month for an exchange of knowledge and insights at the DSI Global Guest Lecture. They spoke to both current cohorts about their jobs, their journey, their passions, the wicked problems they’re working to solve, and how what they learned at DSI is helping them succeed.

Get Funded to Design a Better World

We have a special love for the Sappi Ideas That Matter program because it was originally created by DSI Chair Cheryl Heller. For the past 17 years, Ideas that Matter has given great designers the funds they need to fuel great change, helping establish over 500 charitable programs — that’s more than $12.5 million toward improving lives and communities worldwide. Well, it’s a new year and we’re looking for fresh ideas!

A Tribute to Our Graduating Cohort, from Next Years Graduates

Today was thesis day, and at DSI, we have a tradition that first year students create a film to send the graduating class on their way out into the world with best wishes. We hope you enjoy this celebration, and a preview of next year’s graduating class.

Inside a Thesis Prototype: The V Store

Rarely in life do we get to have something we’ve been picturing in our heads for a long time come to life in the real world, so this has been an amazing and mind-bending experience. I came up with the concept for The V Store just over a year ago: a comprehensive, approachable concept store…

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The Power of a Thesis in Design for Social Innovation

In a matter of weeks, our third class will present their thesis projects on stage at the SVA Beatrice Theater. One of the unique aspects of DSI is the diversity of our students, in their interests, their experiences and the cultures from which they come. Twenty-four countries (and counting) have been represented, with interests as…

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The Legendary Paul Polak Speaks at DSI

Paul Polak has brought nineteen million people out of poverty, practiced human-centered design before anyone ever heard of it, and pioneered new techniques for market creation among rural farmers in Africa and Asia. He is also a dear friend and mentor to DSI, and on our Faculty at Large. A master at designing affordable technologies…

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DSI at SXSW

DSI Chair and social impact innovator Cheryl Heller traveled to Austin to join moderator David Fukuzawa of the Kresge Foundation, and fellow speakers David van der Leer of Van Alen Institute, Joanna Frank of Center for Active Design, and Bon Ku, MD, Director of CWIC-Design, for SXSW’s SXgood Hub’s Stories, a series of talks from…

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Can Social Innovation Design Influence the Health of a Community? Reporting on DSI’s Harlem First Initiative

For the fall semester’s Mapping and Visualization Design class, first-year DSI students tackled the question: How can social innovation design influence the health of a community? And who should be part of the conversation? The community in question is East Harlem, where DSI is already partnering with the Poptech Institute, the Arnhold Global Health Institute, and…

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Save the Dates: Harlem First. Mapping the Health of a Community

MFA Design for Social Innovation, The Arnhold Institute for Global Health, and the PopTech Institute are partnering to create a new way to understand and address the health needs of a community.

136 W 21st St,
5th Fl.
New York, NY 10011
(212) 592–2205

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