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What DSI-ers are reading, watching, listening to NOW?

Here at DSI we think Summer is a time to rest, reflect, and ….read. 


We recommend: Build a habit of reading, reflecting, and writing. We’ve curated a list of faculty and staff picks below. These selections give you perspectives on social innovation and emerging themes. Don’t feel you have to read them all, just pick what strikes you. And if you haven’t tried journaling, blogging, or posting to social media, there’s no time like the present.  


Reading list

We encourage you to support Black-owned bookstores!

The Intergalactic Design Guide Harnessing the Creative Potential of Social Design, Cheryl Heller, founder of MFA DSI

Air Made Visible, Bruno Munari

Algorithms of Oppression, Safiya Umoja Noble

The Art of Gathering, Priya Parker

Being Mortal, Atul Gawande

Beyond Sticky Notes: Doing co-design for real, Kelly Ann McKercher

The Black Experience In Design, Anne H. Berry, Kareen Collie, Penina Acayo Laker, Lesley-Ann Noel, Jennifer Rittner, Kelly Walters

The Body Keeps The Score – Bessel Van Der Kolk, MD

Citizen: An American Lyric, Claudia Rankine

Computer as Theatre, Brenda Laurel

Considering the book that is the body of the beloved, Gregory Orr

Decolonizing Design: A Cultural Justice Guidebook, Elizabeth (Dori) Tunstall

Design Justice: Community-Led Practices to Build the Worlds We Need, Sasha Costanza-Chock

Design Struggles: Intersecting Histories, Pedagogies, and Perspectives, Claudia Mareis & Nina Paim (eds) 

Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds, adrienne maree brown

The Empathy Exams, Leslie Jamison

Facilitating Participatory Decision-Making, Sam Kaner

Freedom is a Constant Struggle, Angela Y. Davis

A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things, Jason W. Moore & Raj Patel

Holding Change: The Way of Emergent Strategy Facilitation and Mediation, adrienne maree brown

The Life and Death of American Cities, Jane Jacobs

Minor Feelings, Cathy Park Hong

A New Reality, Jonas Salk & Jonathan Salk

Parable of the Sower, Octavia Butler

Pedagogy of the Oppressed, Paulo Freire

Radical Technologies, Adam Greenfield

Rekindling Democracy: A professional’s guide to working in citizen space, Cormac Russell

They Say / I Say: The Moves That Matter in Academic Writing, Gerald Graff, Cathy Birkenstein

Thinking in Systems, Donella Meadows

Vertical, Stephen Graham

You’re More Powerful than You Think: A Citizen’s Guide to Making Change Happen, Eric Liu

The Wisdom of Crowds, James Surowiecki

Why We Revolt, Victor Montori



How to Think Differently about Doing Good as a Creative Person”, Omayeli Arenyeka illustrated by Neta Bomani

Theory as Liberatory Practice”, bell hooks

“Decentering the Designer”, Betsy Ramaccia

MeasureD website on use of M&E in design-led social impact interventions



Thirteenth, Ava DuVernay

White Like Me, Jeremy Young, Scott Morris, Sut Jhally, and Tim Wise 

Social Experiments to Fight Poverty, Esther Defflo, TED Talk

Simple Hacks for Life with Parkinson’s, Mileha Soneji, TED Talk on human-centered design

Designing for Inclusivity, Liz Jackson

Eyes on the Prize, the definitive story of the civil rights era

CoDesign and Power, from Social Design Sydney

The “Co-liberation conversations” series from the California Faculty Association.

Creating community in the street where you live

Participatory decision-making in multi-stakeholder situations

The Outside podcast, Tim Merry and Tuesday Ryan-Hart

Digital Apothecary Podcast

The Moth podcast

Radiolab podcast

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