The sphere of social design is growing, yet often in reaction to a set of social problems as opposed to in the prevention of those problems to begin with. Meanwhile, advocacy that aims to affect systemic progress tends to be executed with little space for creativity and few resources for high-quality design tools. In attempt to explore the marriage of these growing needs, The Progress LAB serves as a model for a way in which design can improve the effectiveness of policy-level social change work.
While most social innovation design work happens at the ground level, focusing on one-to-one solutions, those working to enact policy-level systemic change have yet so much to gain from the strategy and impact of design tools. The goal for this project was to imagine a space where these worlds unite.
The Progress LAB is an idea for studio that harnesses the power of design thinking for big picture progress. Its work happens in two places: 1) In ‘advocacy labs,’ to employ design thinking processes to develop effective & strategic policy efforts and 1) as an enterprise, offering solutions for government challenges.