Civic Design

Civic Design

Civic design is the use of design inquiry and making to address societal issues and contribute to our communal lives. The methods are open and participatory and strive to foster and sustain direct democracy and radical pluralism. Civic design spans formal and informal contexts and practices, and includes organizations, systems, environments, media and communications. 

Vertically Integrated Project: Civic Design

The purpose of this course is to research and develop information, communication, and media systems to address regional civic issues, using techniques from design, computing, and social sciences, in collaboration with government and community partners.  These systems will have real-world impact, and promote social sustainability, equity, and justice.

Urban Farming & Community Gardens

Starting a community garden in an abandoned vacant lot is a good way to address blight in a neighborhood. This project builds on the dataset of Westside Atlanta property surveys and walks the students through the process of starting a community garden to selling its produce on farmers markets. It emphasizes the social aspect of community building and the importance of buying local.

Rodent Control

This is a collection of assignments around the problem of rodent infestation in cities, which has become a pressing problem following the mild winters in 2015-16. The assignments are designed to 1) develop mapping and data analysis skills, 2) give meaningful ideas for application prototyping, and 3) foster thinking about community engagement. This is based on an up-to-date (2017) dataset of rat sightings in New York City and an on-going collaboration between Georgia Tech and the community of English Avenue.

Getting to Know our Georgia Tech

This journaling tool, based on a lesson created by Yelena Rivera-Vale and Kristina Chatfield, introduces first year students to Georgia Tech’s efforts to create a sustainable campus community. Touring sites on campus, documenting the tour experience through journaling and photography, and considering the ways that sustainable design can impact the environment, equity, and economy will teach students about how effective sustainable design impacts both Georgia Tech and the wider Atlanta community.