the unschool of disruptive design 

THE UNSCHOOL OF DISRUPTIVE DESIGN / Self-funded / Launched Sept 3 2014 / UnSchool website  here

THE UNSCHOOL OF DISRUPTIVE DESIGN / Self-funded / Launched Sept 3 2014 / UnSchool website here

Nelson Mandela was right when he said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” but the education system no longer serves the world-changing-types. All too often, we see education churning out “cookie cutter” ideas and reducing the complexity of the world down to reductive silos. So, we set about disrupting the way we share and experience knowledge by creating an experimental knowledge lab called the UnSchool of Disruptive Design.

We also decided to challenge the dominant discourse around the power of individual agency in affecting positive change through the development of our non-school school. The UnSchool programs are designed for the purpose-driven leader, the agitator, and the passionately inspired change agent who is willing and wanting to participate in making change.

Since my Mexico City fellowship experience, The Un-School initiative and founder inspired me to make a positive change through design. During this fellowship, I became aware of how my expertise in Design Thinking and UX design can tackle social problems.
— Arturo Ortega, Mexico City


Disrupting education by Disrupt Design

Our immersive educative programs are for world-changing-types, including but not limited to: designers, artists, innovators, and social entrepreneurs. These programs pop-up in cities all over the world, set in various locations (always interesting, sometimes surprising) that demonstrate the relevance of an activated change making practice set.

Through the UnSchool we curate unique, cerebrally-activating experiences designed to reorientate the way people participate in the world around them. Employing a foundation in critical pedagogy, we co-curate experiences with our community - which has grown to over 220 people from 37 countries in just 2.5 years. We have run programs in Mexico City, New York, Melbourne, Sao Paulo, London, France, Berlin, Lisbon, San Francisco and Rio de Janeiro.

The UnSchool encourages people from diverse backgrounds to maximize their capacity to influence and affect positive social change. We help emerging leaders and established professionals rapidly upskill in designing interventions for social innovation. Our programs center on our exclusive approach to change-making, the Disruptive Design Method. The UnSchool’s three critical knowledge pillars of systems, sustainability, and design allow us to build fascinating programs that don't exist anywhere else in the world.

It was such an incredible experience that was so thoughtfully planned and carried out with precisionist touch. My expectations were blown away. And what a perfect mix of people.
— Brittany, NYC

Check out this view into our 2017 spring fellowship in San Francisco.


Here’s a glimpse inside the Berlin Fellowship

20 creative rebels and change agents from 12 countries came together for 7 intensive days to explore systems, sustainability and design for activating positive social change. 

The Un-School fellowship is not only a program to put methods and ideas into your brain, but also a unique program that makes you believe in the power of disruptive design and sustainability by your heart, and especially in yourself to make change. There were so many scattered ideas in my mind until the week of fellowship program. It’s been only three weeks since I came back to my country and have already started prototyping my solo idea, which came to during one of the mentor workshops. No matter what your interest area is, you can find something for yourself in these mentor sessions which were perfectly organized by Leyla and her team.
— Nihan Ozturk, Istanbul