My friends and family, over the years, have come to me for help when they encounter something that they cannot quite seem to figure out. “Give it to Mehrafza. She is a designer. She knows what to do with it...” Again and again, I explain to them that if the product is...

February 20, 2018

People have been asking me over the last few years why am I, as a designer, working on the human brain?

I respond by saying that, as a design researcher, I am trying to better understand people. I am trying to know what their inner motivations are. I am trying to decons...

December 18, 2017

I had already been working as a creative director and educator of systems thinking and circular economy when the Turkish Society of Rochester asked me to give some systems thinking and critical thinking workshops for children, in the Turkish language. I was responsible...

October 20, 2017

This fall semester, I am presenting to my industrial design students at the Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester, New York) some of the material that follows. I am also preparing applications for next summer’s academic conferences and workshops. My initial rese...

As designers we know how beautifully-designed things make us feel, but, so many of the critical thinking tools for concepts like Systems Thinking and the Circular Economy are made in ways that don’t speak to creatives, and well, are often a little on the boring side. T...

Our world is comprised of the interconnections of millions of complex systems in action. Humans produce and experience these systems in countless different ways. Designing and thinking on a system scale means needing to adapt and to see the world through other people’s...

I have worked as an industrial designer for nearly a decade. I have designed a wide variety of products, from medical devices to product packages, from lighting systems to ATMs. I have found that this process invariably reinforces linear thinking. If you are not your o...

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