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OCAD’s Dori Tunstall Will Keynote CanUX in 2017

April 20, 2017 by Corneliux

Another fantastic keynote is on deck for our 8th edition.

Respectful Design: The Canadian Context
} Nov 4, 2017   9:00am / 45 MINUTES

The Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCAD U) has initiated the challenge of decolonizing its institution. Dr. Dori Tunstall, the Dean of the Faculty of Design, describes how Respectful Design serves the appropriate design ethos for this process.

In a keynote address fitting for Canada’s sesquicentennial celebration, she will comment and share projects describing what Respectful Design means for the Faculty in the context of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Report and our global obligations towards cultural, social, and environmental justice.

Speaker Bio: Dori Tunstall

Elizabeth (Dori) Tunstall is a design anthropologist, public intellectual, and design advocate who works at the intersections of critical theory, culture, and design. As Dean of Design at Ontario College of Art and Design University, she is the first black and black female dean of a faculty of design. She leads the Cultures-Based Innovation Initiative focused on using old ways of knowing to drive innovation processes that directly benefit communities.

With a global career, Dori served as Associate Professor of Design Anthropology and Associate Dean at Swinburne University in Australia. She wrote the biweekly column Un-Design for The Conversation Australia. In the U.S., she taught at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She organized the U.S. National Design Policy Initiative and served as a director of Design for Democracy. Industry positions included UX strategists for Sapient Corporation and Arc Worldwide. Dori holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Stanford University and a BA in Anthropology from Bryn Mawr College.

Dr. Tunstall feels that the shift towards focusing on social impact will encourage people from a wider spectrum of cultural and racial backgrounds to pursue design-related career paths. “As an African-American, if you’re intelligent, creative, and talented, your community expects you to become a doctor, lawyer, engineer, or teacher—one of the occupations the community feels it needs,” she says. “But design, in many examples, is the mark of exploitation. For instance, why are all the ads in black communities for cigarettes, alcohol, malt liquor, or $200 designer jeans? Why should designers use their creativity to support businesses that exploit their communities?” But as business models change and become more responsive and responsible to social conditions, diversity in design will flourish. Tunstall says, “As long as [the design world] is perceived as an art club, you know, just beautiful posters in a gallery, creative people in communities of color will find other venues of self expression and community empowerment. But they’re more optimistic now in terms of the changes that are going on in design and how it resonates with their lives.”

For more info, you can follow Dori on on Twitter @dori_danthro

*Image credit Dori Tunstall and interview excerpt: AIGA

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