Management Strategy, Public Engagement & Organizational Development Consultant
Over the course of 2010–2011, I provided AIA SF and its companion nonprofit the Center for Architecture + Design with management strategy, participatory action research, and organizational development expertise. Our aim was to re-imagine the ways each entity could increase public interest in architecture, design, and creative placemaking. I conducted an assessment of each entity’s core capacities and institutional objectives and coupled those findings with existing literature on cultural engagement. From there I conceived and oversaw the 2011 Architecture and the City Festival, a novel form of action research. The festival was built around “The Architecture of Consequence Exhibition”—an innovative partnership between AIA SF, the Center for Architecture + Design, the Netherlands Architecture Institute, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Consul General of the Netherlands.
This month-long, citywide festival featured over forty events that demonstrated how progressive design and participatory placemaking practices can be used to address society’s most salient current challenges. I designed the festival as a form of action research as means to leverage existing organizational capacities and test public engagement strategies in real time. As a result, I established a range of new partnerships, diversified audiences, established new performance metrics, increased program-related profits, decreased program-related expenses, raised contributed income, and—most importantly—stimulated greater public interest and expanded interaction between stakeholders in the fields of architecture, public policy, local government, and philanthropy. A book about the festival can be found here.
The festival closed with the GOOD Design Challenge, which placed local designers inside four municipal agencies to engage in experimental and cross-sector problem solving. A video of the event can be viewed here.