DesignedBy___ Design Brief

The intent of this Design Brief is to enlist all of humanity to collectively act. If you want to contribute to this program, Join the Design CorpsFund Apprentice Designers or Retweet This Brief.


In 2020 under represented communities of women, LBGTQ+, LatinX, Black, Indigenous, Asian and Disabled humans only hold 6.7% of leadership positions in all design fields. Whether it is in Architecture, Interior Design, Industrial, Graphic, Interface, User Experience, Urban Planning, Fashion and Product Design the under representation in those fields has become a systemic barrier from inside and outside of under represented communities. In historically underinvested communities, “design” and “creative” as we know it are often misunderstood, undervalued and seen as a risky low income career. This is because the term — design used to be referred to as commercial art, which is viewed as a hobby, tied to narratives of the starving artists and not a value to traditional businesses. Exacerbating the problem, current education systems in K-12 that are funded, treat design, craft and creative as elective classes without a proper grading system. 

For aspiring creators, designers and inventors who don’t have visible role models, supporters at home, in their classrooms or in their communities, all too often their parents and guardians do not understand design or the arts as a career choice and view the cost of the education far too risky for their families long term investment. The lack of role models and true narratives that demonstrate that design as a career that pays above average salaries acts as a blockade to design education and rewarding, above average income careers in design.

Deep Dive: Evidence & Data
  1. Redesigners for Justice: Building a Community Within the Design Field Itself
  2. Female Fashion Designers Are Still in the Minority
  3. 2018 Women In The Workplace | Women In The Workplace 2019
  4. 10 Design Leaders on How to Empower Women in the Workplace
  5. Broad Band: The Untold Story of the Women Who Made the Internet
  6. Ruined by Design: How Designers Destroyed the World, and What We Can Do to Fix It
  7. How 6 Indigenous Designers Are Using Fashion to Reclaim Their Culture
  8. Mexico's female architects find success "without a male partner
  9. Racial Diversity Among Architects is Slow, but Experts Say the Conversation Continues
The Design Corps Purpose & Design Intent

The intent of this studio production is designed to celebrate, secure and share the legacy of women, LBGTQ+, LatinX, Black, Indigenous, Asian and Disabled Creators, Makers, Inventors and Designers by creating entertainment and media that discovers and uncovers narratives that bring forward the legitimate power and impact audacious humans have on their communities, business and the planet.

  1. Combat false narratives about design and the arts careers in underinvested communities of women, LBGTQ+, LatinX, Black, Indiginous, Asian and Disabled humans. 
  2. Identify, celebrate and preserve the legacy of design & creative leaders who model positive narratives for under represented communities.
  3. Assist design leaders and influencers connect and model the power of creativity and  design in underinvested schools and communities.
  4. Ensure design leaders in all fields of arts & design are accessible to underinvested communities as role models.
Design Activities
  1. Using data, content and evidence based narratives, create entertaining campaigns promoting content. 
    Using open-source, free platforms to produce, compose and distribute DesignedBy___ audio, video podcast and Alexa Skills that is accessible to all humans.
  2. Design & publish DesignedBy__ books that serve as curriculum in a Master Class for K-12 and Design Apprentices. 
  3. Publish a series of accessible DesignedBy__ books and tools that serve as curriculum in a Master Class for K-12 and Design Apprentices. 
  4. Create a series of accessible events that invite creative & design leaders to enage directly with  underinvested communities of women, LBGTQ+, LatinX, Black, Indiginous, Asian and Disabled humans. 
  5. Create a communications calendar and campaigns that promote DesignedBy___ featured designers and creators.
Measurable Outcomes By Design
  1. Increase the number of public schools with S.T.E.A.M.D. curriculums
  2. Decrease the barriers to financing education is the arts and design
  3. Increase the number of design students and apprentices in accredited programs.
  4. Increase the number of creative and designers leading large, mid sized and small businesses.
Designed Deliverables
  1. DesignedBy___ Accessible Audio and Video Podcast
  2. DesignedBy___ Accessible Alexa Skill
  3. DesignedBy___ Accessible Curriculum, Tools & Books
  4. DesignedBy___ Local Accessible Events
  5. DesignedBy___ Communications plan and campaign assets


Fund This Program

The DesignedBy_____ video and audio podcast is a public service and free to use! Donations pay for production, promotion and creative and design apprentices working and training on this program. Make a donation to this team to resist and oppose false narratives about design and the arts careers in underinvested communities with success stories and access to education.

Distinguished Designers

Susan "Leki" Lekanides & Joanna Peña-Bickley

Interested in becoming a distinguished designer? Join the Design Corps.
Interested in contributing your design talents to this team? Join the Design Corps and select this studio program.

Designed By___ Studio Partners

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