Helly Blyth

May 2024

NYCXDESIGN Festival Panel

The NYCxDESIGN festival is New York City’s official celebration of design, and its most impactful annual design event. As part of this, we opened the doors to our New York studio for a panel discussion about about the role of user-centred design today.

User-centered design champions the individual user. Through iterative design, requirement clarification, and consistent feedback, the process ensures that users and their necessary tasks are the primary focus throughout the design process. However, this approach has become increasingly limited and restricts the potential of design.

Enter community-centered design, an approach that widens the scope of user centered design to assess the entire community landscape that a service will exist in. This design outlook hinges on partnership and education to solve the fundamental, underlying issues, not just the visible or immediate symptoms of a problem.

Our panel was comprised of industry leaders from various sectors including education, public service, and technology: Chloe Chang (Senior Designer, Hester Street), Ryan Fedyk (Design Leader, Google), Ritesh Gupta (Founder, Useful School) and Rose Pember (Assistant Professor, Parsons). The panel was moderated by Eric Ng (Executive Creative Director, DesignStudio).

The evening kicked off with welcome drinks, followed by an hour-long discussion and closed with time allotted for connections and networking. Thank you to everyone who attended, in particular our wonderful panelists. We look forward to continuing the discussions surrounding community-centered design, and we can take part in taking the step towards inclusive and sustainable design practices. 

So is it time to end user centered design?

Watch the video below to find out.