Our goal was to discover how we, as designers, create belonging through simple objects and experiences. Belonging was the North Star at every stage.
Common Era, the R&D engine of the Jim Joseph Foundation, invited students from across Parsons to participate in a design sprint - titled How Do You Belong?
Mar 2023 - Apr 2023
New York City
We for Women
a design intervention enabling a sense of belonging
The core for day one was to identify opportunities for us to design for a specific audience focused on an opportunity area such as fashion, education, art, housing, or food. The share-out at the end of that session revealed how bringing together students from a range of design disciplines could yield rich conversations and unique areas of opportunity.
Talking to a few women in the room, and researching through common lived experiences, we identified that women struggle massively, lacking a sense of belonging. From facing difficulties navigating through the city, or seeking healthcare advice, or finding mentors or friends, the struggle only amplifies.
As we talked through what belonging meant to us, the importance of community in our lives, and so on, Twiggy, our teammate, talked about her research on the topic of women struggling with the house rentals in NYC.
Keeping NYC in mind, a city so diverse, the hashtag enables women to open-up and speak with each other. Sitting on the subway, or walking through the city with our tote-bags, stickers, pins and badges, you empower women around you to engage in conversations - ask for a tampon, discuss work, talk about your dogs or the book you’re reading (enabling agency for the women who carry the message, but also the women looking for help,
#WeForWomen is a conversation starter.
The project was a part of a zine setup by the Jim Joseph Foundation and Parsons School of Design for the Parsons Benefit, organized in May 2023.
Xiaoyu Twiggy Wang, Claire Zhuang, Ishaanee Pandey
The first day of the sprint featured an inspiring presentation by Kelly Ernst and Annyelica Diaz, alumni from the Parsons Strategic Design and Management MS program whose capstone project, In Common, explored the art and science of belonging.