RISD and Brown students are gearing up for the third year of A Better World by Design, a three-day internationally acclaimed conference to take place October 1-3, 2010. A global community of innovative thinkers, professionals and students will converge in Providence, RI to discuss design's role as an integrative application for world improvement. Core77 had the opportunity to cover this unique event in its first two years, 2008 and 2009.
At A Better World by Design leaders in the fields of sustainable architecture, design, engineering, and economics will collaborate with MBA candidates, students from myriad disciplines, academics, and local politicians.
This October, the conference will choose a winner of its Better World Challenge, a student design competition that focuses on finding an implementable solution to food deserts - areas with limited to no access to fresh, healthy, and affordable food.
Speakers include Robert Fabricant of Frog Design, Ramsey Ford of Design Impact, and serial entrepreneur Lisa Gansky. Additionally, A Better World by Design will feature twelve intimate panel sessions that introduce new ideas in integrative design methods and cover topics like disaster-resistant housing and urban arts activism.
Willem Van Lancker is a product designer (UX) at Google with a passion for ethnography, maps, data visualization, and producing delightful user experiences.
Willem came to Google from IDEO where he worked as a communication designer focusing on understanding business systems and organizations through visual communication. Previous to IDEO, Willem worked for Apple, where he designed user interfaces for products including iPhone and iPad, and adidas, where he created new brand identities for various major league sports teams respectively.
Willem is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) with a degree in Graphic Design. While at RISD, Willem teamed with a small group of Brown and RISD students to create A Better World by Design, a now-annual three-day conference encouraging social and environmental impact within educational policy. He also served as a researcher and core member for RISDâ€™s Strategic Plan, charting a new course for RISDâ€™s academic programs and student life initiatives focused on how students of different disciplines can innovate through collaboration.
When he is not working on new innovations for Google, Willem can be found writing, sailing, playing squash (both the sport and the gourd), following English (and American) football, and occasionally regretting the decision to eat that bacon-wrapped hotdog from a food-cart in the Mission District.