Introducing the CITYSeries: A Letter from the Editor
As our fearless leader (aka Editor in Chief), David Dewane, outlined in the Vision for 2017, we’re committed to showcase the harder to find, yet equally important and compelling work that’s happening outside of San Francisco, New York City, Chicago, Boston, and Washington D.C.—the five major cities in which impact design tends to concentrate. Because we see the uncovering of the best work in impact design regardless of geographic location or ease of access to be our task as a leading design impact media outlet, I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce our upcoming CITYSeries, an initiative designed to do exactly that.
Where are we going?
We’re kicking the CITYSeries off in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. In the vein of our 40 under 40 list, we’ll be featuring 40 initiatives across the Twin Cities that span the environmental design, products and services, academic, and public sectors. Our goal is to explore what’s happening in these sectors in the context of the Twin Cities, in a way that thoroughly the issues these initiatives are looking to address as well as the roadblocks that stand in their way.
Our hope is that what we uncover in the process—as we move through analyzing design impact in a context by context, city by city manner—accomplishes two things. We hope that what we explore pushes the critical conversations in the design impact space forward, but also, as the series progresses and the cities begin to line up next to each other, that perhaps something broader, perhaps something that the field isn’t seeing in city silos, might begin to reveal itself. Of course we can never know until we try, so here we are—endeavoring into the unknown in hope of finding something great (or useful and interesting at the very least).
Why the Twin Cities?
Not only are there a wealth of institutions, organizations, and people doing important design impact work in the Twin Cities, but the IDH team has a few ties to the area (to be completely transparent, I live here) that make it a sensible place to start. That said, although we had a few leads who played an invaluable role in the launch of our research in the Twin Cities (who we cannot thank enough for their generosity), this is still largely a new exploration, one that’s riddled with all of the issues you’d expect when embarking on something new and that means that we might not have all the kinks worked out yet.
This is where you come in, dear readers. We’re excited to showcase the unique work we’ve come across as we’ve begun putting this series together and expect to learn a lot as we go in order to move towards the best, most inclusive, and realistically representative presentation of the work that’s actually happening in the cities we’ll be featuring. But is there something or someone we missed? What should be in the conversation that isn’t being featured? Perhaps you have an idea for which city we should head to next? Let us know.
One of the best things about editing IDH is our readership—we’re constantly humbled and impressed by the caliber of our readers. So please, join the conversation. Help us shape this. Lend us your expertise. We’re a small, fierce, and dedicated team, but we’re also only that. We rely on feedback and input from our readers, those out there engaging in this work on a day to day basis, to guide us as we shape the new content that we’ll be producing in 2017. We’re incredibly excited about this new chapter, and we want to do it right, and that means with you. We’re looking forward to finding out where this road will lead, and we’re honored to have you at our side along the way.