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Public Interest Design Incubator

The goal of the Public Interest Design Incubator is to engage the public to understand challenges, develop partners, and create design responses. The course will explore methods of how design can address the critical issues faced by communities. Students will actively develop a real community-based project by engaging the public to understand challenges, developing partners and proposing design solutions. Design assignments will cover incubating a project from initial community contact through programming and schematic design. Assignments will integrate form throughout the process, including the design, construction,  and installation of a small design/build project as a catalyst.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Leverage stakeholders assets to address project challenges through available and appropriate resources;
  • Develop a public interest design project through programming and schematic stages;
  • Use a rapid iteration and  a team brainstorming process to design collaboratively and with a community as a partner;
  • Research the need of a community and then analyze the potential social, economic, and environmental impact of a design project.

PID: Community Collaborator Information

  • Application Due: May 1
  • Timeframe: Fall semester
  • Product: Visioning and multiple schematic designs
  • Questions and key contact: Bryan Bell, Associate Professor, bbell@ncsu.edu

Process of Collaboration:

Public Interest Design relies on cooperation and collaboration. The design process used will follow the SEED process, a holistic, creative approach to design driven by community needs. This process provides a step-by-step guide for both students and professionals who want to undertake public interest design projects. SEED goes beyond “green” design with a “triple bottom line” approach that includes the social and economic as well as the environmental. This is a rapid iteration brainstorming process is called “asset-based design.” Through the course period, hundreds of good ideas will be identified through a team selection process and will be combined as the project moves forward. Through this team method, well-considered and resolved ideas will move forward. Final project evaluation will be gauged by project stakeholders and instructor based on how well the design result addresses the established needs and meets the established “vision of success” through an inclusive and collaborative process.

Criteria to Apply:

  1. Project activities and scope must meet the students’ learning outcomes for the semester-based course.
  2. Applicant must be a governmental agency or 501-c3 Non-profit organization or both.
  3. Project must serve the public.
  4. Access for NCSU to meet and discuss project with the project stakeholders and community members.
  5. Scope: Can be large scale or small but needs to be open enough to include many.
  6. If a specific site is already identified, it should be owned or secured with zoning suited to project.
  7. Location: must be within 30 minutes’ drive to NCSU College of Design.
  8. Have the ability to help measure outputs and outcomes of public benefit.

If you meet the above criteria, to apply please complete the following questions.

Schedule for application and selection process:

  • May 1: Collaboration Proposals due
  • May 1 through May 31: Finalists selected
  • June through July: Interviews of finalists completed and primary stakeholder selected
  • August 1: Project selected
  • August 1 through 17: Secure approvals
  • August 17: Announce studio to students and start of Incubator

PID Application Request for Collaboration

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