I was planning to write about this topic for quite some time. So, here I am finally writing down my thoughts on community-centered design.
In previous avatars as an intrapreneur, impact investor and consultant, I have used various frameworks like rapid prototyping, design thinking, system thinking, and human-centered design. The first course that I ever did apart from core engineering was “Design Thinking for innovations” by Jeanne M. Liedtka.
But someone like me who try to have a holistic approach towards life, always felt there is some gap in these approaches, especially when I was trying to compare it with interconnectedness philosophy – Gaia. I see this from the lens of the intersection of humans, animals, and nature, as described by Zoe Weil, founder of the Institute of Humane Education.
The part of the reason I was looking at this was also because, in my last stint with Gray Matters Capital, I worked with Smita Sircar, Director of Innovations to not only kickstart an ed-tech focused fund initiative, edLABS but also kickstart ecosystem development work where various stakeholders in the education sector can come together and help the ecosystem matures. This is the perfect example of leveraging a systems approach to solve problems in the Indian education sector.
George, founder of Faiā ignited/ reignited my thoughts on community, movements, tribes, systems, and culture. He made me hooked on to the power of community. Recently, I joined him as head of innovations, to streamline ideas to actions, by simplifying various pieces of Faia’s offerings. Faiā’s mission is to solve complex business/ individual problems by looking from the lens of community. At its core, Faiā helps businesses and individuals unleash or unlock their full potential by leveraging community and technology. While having back and forth on community and solving issues of our clients, led to the birth of community-centered design.
What is Community Centred Design (CCD)?
The community-centered design derives inspiration from the human-centered design and extrapolating it to the community by having a system engineering approach. In CCD, the community is at the center of designing solutions, which helps to have a more “system” approach and not just an individualistic approach, which many times can disrupt the existing social structure, damage the culture or even hamper the community dynamics.
Faiā believes in engineering communities as every individual action affects the community in a positive or negative way by leveraging technologies like bitcoin.
Faiā’s 3 core principles of CCD Framework → →
1. Technology Harmonisation – integrating tech for the community, not just for the individual
2. Systems Thinking – looking at the overall system and ecosystem holistically. Nothing we create exists in isolation; it all lives within the overall natural system
3. Faiā as a philosophy – i.e. bridging extremes
Through CCD framework, we offer a better alternative to designing solutions to business problems by helping businesses look beyond one consumer or employee to a whole system and their inter-relational context by leveraging powerful emerging technologies (e.g. Bitcoin).
Right now, we are in the midst of working on our methodologies and tools that we use while practicing community-centered-design for our clients. So, please hook on to our work, we will be talking about more this topic in months to come in our “It will come” podcasts and blogs series as well as our newsletters.