The Designmatters educational platform at ArtCenter College of Design joins collaboration with experimentation, experience with reflection, problem-solving with problem-discovery, and purpose with action.

Our Mission

Through research, advocacy and action, Designmatters engages, empowers and leads an ongoing exploration of art and design as a positive force in society.

A Future Vision for the Aquarium of the Pacific


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WORKSHOP: Self-Innovation for Social Innovation


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"Art can create awareness and open a dialogue about topics that people wouldn’t otherwise talk about."

Sharon Levy, Product Design, Student

The Es Tiempo Campaign

Summer 2009 - Host Department: Advertising 

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Social Design Insights / May 2019

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Socially Engaged Art: Art in Urban Community Green Spaces


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"Because this was not just an academic exercise, I learned so much about messaging, keeping things consistent, and understanding the psychology of a real campaign."

Liz Levin, Advertising, Student

Big Lessons from the Big Apple: The LA i-team reflects on the NYC’s Service Design Studio


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“Where’s Daryl?” Interaction Design Studio


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COANIQUEM: Safe Niños Designing Innovative Interactive Environments for Pediatric Healing


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Cumulus Conference Rovaniemi 2019 Around the Campfire: Resilience and Intelligence

May 27 – June 1 University of Lapland Rovaniemi, Finland


The students were engaged in very sophisticated research, debate and discussion in this studio, but what really impressed me, in the final production push, was that they were intelligently talking through the options, weighing each decision carefully. The final push was a very mature and professional working team. They worked like a real studio.

Todd Masilko, Associate Professor, Interaction Design


A transcripted course of study for ArtCenter undergraduate students in social innovation

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ArtCenter students are embedded in host organizations for one full 14-week academic term to work on high-level projects.

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Networks & Partnerships

Current partnerships
AEDAmerican Cancer SocietyAmerican Red CrossANSPEAquarium of the PacificArt Division
Arthritis FoundationAshokaAutodesk FoundationBarbieBerkeley Graduate School of JournalismBloomberg
CAL EMACal TechCenter Theatre GroupChildrens Hospital LACity of LACity of Long Beach
City of PasadenaCity of Santa Monica Office of Civic WellbeingCoaniquemCalifornia Common CauseCedar-Sinai Center for Health Equity ResearchCompartamos Con Colombia
Covenant HouseDalbergDoctors Withouth BordersEast West BankEMDRIAFEMA
Flintridge CenterFood ForwardGE HealthcareGirl EffectGoodwillHomeboy
Homeboy Electronics Recycling  Housing WorksHUB Bogota Instituto de Diseño (ISDi)International Medical CorpInternational Organization for Migration
International Rescue CommKyoto Seika UniversityLA County Dept. mental healthLAUSDLegacy LALong Beach Police Department
Mary Pickford FoundationMattelMayoMayor’s Fund Los AngelesNAKFINathan Cummings
NEANike FoundationNOAANorth East TreesOASOutward Bound Adventures
Packard FoundationPAHOParticipant Pasadena Public LibraryPathPlanned Parenthood
PrincetonProject 51Project Concern IntProximityRancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation CenterRonald McDonald House
RubbermaidSappi: Ideas that MatterSCECSentient ResearchSilicon Valley Community FoundationState of California Seismic Safety
SurdnaSHESocialabUS dept of InteriorTAMA Art UniversityTECHO
Tongji University College of Design and InnovationUCLA Business of Science CenterUNESCOUNFPAUNDPUNICEF
UNICEF US FundUNIFEMUnited We StayUNOPSUSC AnnenbergUSC Norris
USGSVANSVentureWellWHOWoods Hole Oceanographic Institution World Bank
Women DeliverYMCA
designmatters networks
AIGACumulus AssociationDesign Ignites ChangeDesigners AccordDesis NetworkIDSA