Creative Community Cases LES

DESIS Lab exploration in NYC

Parsons DESIS (Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability) Lab is a research laboratory created in 2009 at The New School in New York City. DESIS Lab works at the intersection of strategic and service design, management, and social theory, applying interdisciplinary expertise in problem setting and problem solving to sustainable practices and social innovation. Parsons DESIS Lab promotes funded research projects with local partners resulting in workshops, studios toolkits, exhibitions and publications that articulate the practice of social change through design-enable sustainable community initiatives.

Statement of Purpose

Vision

DESIS Lab members explore the relationship between design and social change. Our goal is to advance the practice and discourse of design-led social innovation to foster more equitable and sustainable cities and practices. In a complex world facing numerous systemic challenges, DESIS Lab members rethink assumptions about cultural and economic environments, bringing nuanced approaches drawn from integrated design practices to communities of all kinds. In the DESIS Lab, service design is considered an advanced approach, one integrating many design disciplines.

Foundations

Three foundations guide our research in design strategies:

  • Bridging structural holes: Social settings often suffer from severe information asymmetries. We seek to bridge information gaps and find ways of sharing needed information more effectively.
  • Valuing tacit knowledge: People in a social system rely on both explicit forms of knowledge and “tacit knowledge”—information individuals and communities develop and share through habits and customs. The use of participatory design methods reveals and codifies this subjective knowledge.
  • Nurturing heterarchies: Whereas researchers have focused on social hierarchies and structural asymmetries, little attention has been paid to heterarchies—the lateral forms of collaboration through which social life is constructed. We promote such interdependent networks as it generates more opportunities for heterogeneous forms of collaboration.

For more, see DESIS Lab Website

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Started on

January 1, 2013

4 contributors

54 published sites

sites

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Self Built House Traditional Neighborhood Information Kiosk
Sweat equity Homesteading- Work on housing find one particular case in the LES: we should contact Margarita Lopez (case study) Look also: Housing co-ops in existence - Identify buildings (city owned)...
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Senior Friendly Site Lively Spot Diverse Neighborhood SDG 2  - Zero Hunger
As people get older together incorporating mutual peoples housing association (NORC program) – find one particular case in the LES [ALSO UNDER CARE] Henry Street Settlement's NORC (Naturally Occur...
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Organic or Local Food Local Business Social Enterprise Eco-Products Fair Trade Green Cleaning SDG 2  - Zero Hunger SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
A healthy mostly organic and local bulk dry goods/organic products shop. Anyone can shop here and the coop offer discounts to members (depends on amount of hours worked) seniors, low income, students,...
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Community Center
ABC No Rio is a collectively-run center for art and activism. We are known internationally as a venue for oppositional culture. ABC No Rio was founded in 1980 by artists committed to political and soc...
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Community Center Senior Friendly Site Alternative Health Resource SDG 3 - Good Health and Well Being
An Outpatient Mental Health Clinic It provides counseling and psychotherapy services with an emphasis in family counseling and family therapy. Other services provided are: individual therapy, group th...
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Community Center Child Friendly Site Cultural Performance Art Spot Lively Spot Artisan or Art Studio Diverse Neighborhood
The club trains local youth and created bakery business management models for teens. They also work with green cleaning products, girls make products label. They also work within NYCHA to swap produc...
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Cultural Performance Art Spot Community Center Child Friendly Site Lively Spot Environmental Education Eco Club or Organization
Non-Profit group that seeks to raise awareness through theatre and an annual procession. Forms partnerships with schools, community centers, gardens and parks. Founded in 1991 to fight for the preserv...
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Eco Club or Organization Volunteer Site Free Speech Zone Bicycle Site Community Garden
New York City-based not-for-profit direct-action environmental group that uses events and educational programs to promote a more sustainable, less toxic city. Check out bike repair coop at La Plaza Cu...
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Eco-Justice Organization Free Speech Zone Lively Spot Cultural Site Wifi Spot Local Business
A "Radical Book Store" that also serves fair trade food, and functions as an activist center. Support and serve as a meeting space for "movements that challenge; hierarchy and all syste...
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Information Kiosk Cultural Site SDG 15 - Life on Land Eco Club or Organization Volunteer Site Composting Site SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
East Village Community Coalition
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Eco-Justice Organization
A non-profit organization incorporated in 1998, NYC CGC's mission is to promote the preservation, creation, and empowerment of community gardens through education, advocacy, and grassroots organiz...
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Reuse Healthy Dining Recycling SDG 2  - Zero Hunger SDG 1 - No Poverty
(dumpster divers and scavengers). What do they do: Bring stuff to flea markets, Informal flea markets • Urban Foraging / Dumpster Diving – The practice of recovering useable items from dumpsters or...
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Community Garden Spring Blossoms Garden Public Space or Square Bird and Wildlife Watching Child Friendly Site Senior Friendly Site Wheelchair Accessible
This is the very first Community Garden in NYC! It was started by Liz Christy in 1974 and was named in her memory. Liz Christy Community Garden has always been run by volunteers. ...
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Community Garden
School Garden tended by students (not so easy in this shady spot).
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Community Garden Protected or Cultivated Habitat Farm Animals Public Space or Square Senior Friendly Site Child Friendly Site SDG 3 - Good Health and Well Being SDG 15 - Life on Land SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
Up to 50 regular gardeners including community groups maintain individual beds, and contribute to the upkeep of communal areas. There are cultural festivals, children’s and senior’s gardening programs...
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Community Garden
Community Garden
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Community Garden
9th Street Community Garden and Park was created from multiple plots that cover much of its block. In the 1990’s the city tried to reduce the size of the garden. For those in the neighborhood who came...
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Community Garden
Founded in 1976 by local residents to take back "vacate city lots piled high woith rubble and trash"
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Community Garden
Founded in 1990. Lot was city owned and filled with rubble. LESEC started a compost program in the area. Location now serves as a drop off point for community compost. The garden hosts a "Arts Ex...
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Community Garden
Started in 1981 Normand Valle and Reynaldo Arenas began cleaning the garden. mission is to "provide a safe, green haven for all people, but especially for children who lived in an inhospitable en...
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Community Garden
Community Garden
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Community Garden
Community Garden
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