Reflecting on my Initial Learning Goals

Initial Learning Goal #1:
Exploring innovative and design-driven methods of approaching issues that are difficult to communicate…

Collaborating with Chinese Progressive Association itself requires a lot of learning, because their expertise is so diverse and layered. As a designer with no previous knowledge about the organization, I am approaching issues that are difficult to communicate and even understand myself, such as land trusts, public parcels, and data disaggregation. Nonetheless, this experience helps me see where others can feel stuck when interacting with the missions of the organization.

Creating power maps and utilizing listening methods have been immensely helpful, because these tools allow me to see the bigger picture while not ignoring the individual narratives and pain points.


Initial Learning Goal #2:
I actively seek out joyful moments in my design process…

Because a lot of my interaction with the organization and the potential of the project requires intense learning, there hasn’t been many delightful moments in co-designing with them. The dynamic of the organization is also very tense, and sometimes I don’t feel entirely comfortable with approaching strongly opinionated characters. The short time frame is also one of the challenges we must overcome. How do I co-design with people who don’t have the bandwidth, or with those who want quick answers to their questions?