Who initiates your projects? . . .

We do. We love big, complex problems, and by using our Disruptive Design method, we dive into them, exploring and mining deep into the causal relationships to find opportunities within the system to intervene. We use these experiences to create tools to shift the status quo of the issue that we are dealing with. We push the boundaries of what design can do, so when we get inspired, frustrated or amazed by a phenomenon, from restrictive thinking to education, we self initiate, find funding partners, and develop our own propositions into the world.

Do you take on commissions? . . .

This is a yes, followed by a sometimes. We are really into making change, so we work on projects that have the potential to affect the most positive social change. So when someone comes to us with a challenge, we get EXCITED when we know that the impact potential is great, and then we agree to take it on as a project. Reach out if you have a tricky topic you want us to tackle

Why the name Disrupt Design? . . .

Design is a powerful social scripter that influences everything in our lives; our design agency exists to disrupt the way design is used, understood, and harnessed for its inherent power as a social influencer. Disruptive Design is about intentionally enacting positive social change. Leyla developed the Disruptive Design Methodology as a way of sharing our unique approach to design as an activated tool for social change. We use the method at DD as well as teach it through our UnSchool project.

What’s the deal with your ‘disruptions’? . . .

We pick big topics and we use our DD method to figure out how we can use our creative capacity to influence social change by design in that complex arena. We set about igniting conversations and building bridges of opportunities for others to contribute to the challenges that we all face.

What’s wrong with innovation? . . .

It's reductive and iterative, which doesn't mean it's bad or wrong - it just means it's not progressive enough for the types of changeswe need to see in the world. Traditionally, innovation is about incrementally doing things differently. We want to design new systems that make the old ones obsolete, so we are into provocating for disruptive change, by design.

How can design help the world’s problems? . . .

Design is the silent social scripter that influences nearly everything we do in our lives. It not only scripts our behaviors as humans, but it also molds and forms our understanding of the world through experiences. It's an incredibly powerful force that can be used to shift the status quo of the significant hyper- local to global issues we all know exist in the world around us.

What is the DDM? . . .

The ‘M’ in DDM can stand or Method or Methodology, as we developed a method based on a 12-part methodology to understanding and tackling complex problems through creative interventions. The method is the applied practice of mining, landscaping, and building systems interventions, and the methodology is the thinking tools used to build the method in practice. You can learn all about the method here and take classes in our methodology here.

Can one person really make a difference? . . .

Hells yes. The world is made up of systems that are the product of individual agents. Every agent influences the system. The most important thing is to identify your agency and start to develop your sphere of influence. No matter how small or big it is to start with, with intent you can grow and evolve your contributions to the world through an interactive approach to learning, exploring, and creating. The biggest change can come from the smallest part of the system. Check out Leyla's FB rants on this to see what we mean!

Where can I learn more about your approaches? . . .

You can come to our UnSchool and take a face-to-face program, or you can do classes online here.

Is this Design Thinking? . . .

Definitely not. We use design methods (as people have been doing so FOREVER), and we adopt methods from other professional knowledge sets such as environmental, systems, and social sciences. Design Thinking is a great way to start to think creatively about problems in the world, but it alone does not equip you with the thinking tools needed to address complex problems with creative interventions. In order to do this, you need systems thinking and advanced research tools.

Who have you worked with? . . .

Loads of organizations, especially ones with acronyms like TED, AIGA, UN, and a bunch that have normal names, too. You can see some of them here.

How can I get involved? . . .

You can sign up here.

Where can I learn more about Leyla? . . .

You can check our her website, watch her TED talk, read her Medium posts, or follow her on social to find out where in the world she is and what on Earth she is provoking now!

Do you do any pro bono work, like for non-profits? . . .

We are so into sharing the love, so a big yes to this. Despite being a small and very busy team, we allocate part of our time to helping share our knowledge and collaborating on complex problems with NGO’s and NFTs.

I’m a student; can I intern with you? . . .

We take interns when we can. You can let us know you are keen here.

What are your main arenas you are disrupting right now? . . .

Love and Power. Systems and Creativity.

I want to work with you. Where do I start? . . .

Knowledge building! Start here.