The Impact Design Hub is an online resource for architects, designers, and makers committed to designing a better world. The daily blog, directory, video channels, job board, infographics, and more provide information and tools for impact designers to do more meaningful work and tackle wicked problems. As the next incarnation of the popular PublicInterestDesign.org, Impact Design Hub aims to build a more robust website for those involved in public interest, humanitarian, social impact, and community design.
What Is Impact Design?
It’s no secret that there are many terms used to describe the work of designers who devote their time and energy to improving the world around them; public interest design, human centered design, social design, humanitarian design and community design, just to name a few. Impact design is rooted in the same core belief that design can be used to create positive social, environmental and economic change, but focuses on process rather than outcome. Impact design is defined by a focus on actively measuring impact and using that measurement to continually inform and direct the design process.
To be sure, the concept of impact design already exists and is a critical part of many of the projects we have featured on our blog. The decision to re-launch PublicInterestDestign.org as ImpactDesignHub.org (and champion the term impact design) is not an attempt to overshadow or discredit any other terms; instead our intention is to add to the growing discourse in this field by re-focusing our efforts on a topic we believe deserves more attention; impact measurement. Public interest design is a rapidly changing field, and we aim to help it continue to evolve and mature.
But Why A New Term?
Over the past three years we’ve seen a few important development within this growing field, and we’ve also seen a number of rising criticisms. As the go-to place on the web for information on the field, we felt it was our responsibility to not only share content but also help address gaps. It’s become clear to us over the past three years that while designers are doing great work all around the world, there is a common struggle to demonstrate and communicate the actual impact they’re having. In order to address that gap, we decided to re-launch our website and re-focus our work on providing both content and resources that can help elevate the conversations within this field about impact measurement.
We believe impact measurement is the key to the future of this work, and the term impact design is simply a means to an end; a mechanism to help catalyze conversations. Under the banner of impact design, our team will work to provide thought-provoking content and useful resources for all the designers out there who are working to create positive change in the world around them.