Become a Disrupter by Design


Think of the best conference you can imagine. Combine it with a vacation where you meet a random group of wonderful, whip-smart, people that you embark on a series of unforgettable adventures with. Top off all that awesomeness with the fact that you’ll be cerebrally stimulated and learning game changing skills for active participation and purpose. That’s what our fellowship programs are. Join us in NYC! I hope to see you there.

Learn More and APPLY NOW!



12 Fellows. 7-Day Intensive Program.
Sunday 14th – Saturday 20th June 2015 in NYC
By Application Only

Extensive Experiences In Disruptive Design and Social Innovation. Amazing Mentors. Curated Networks. Mind-changing Activations.

Real World Projects and Challenges. Clients. Change. Sustainability. Design. Social Innovation.


Thinking Architecture

Dr. Tracy Ann Essoglou wants you to stop trying to be a “thought leader” and get ready to practice “thinking architecture” instead.

Dr. Essoglou is a culturescaper, thinking architect, and founder of Situation Design. We connected online through my previous post about #WeWashing in the so-called “sharing economy” and decided to meet up over coffee, where we discussed topics ranging from art and activism, to philosophy, wisdom and design.

One key takeaway from the conversation that really resonated with me was her use of the term “thinking architect” rather than the well-worn buzzword “thought leader.”

Read more on Medium>>


Thinking Architecture

Transformative Storytelling class – May 11

BSC Class: Transformative Storytelling – Using Narrative to Communicate, Inspire, and Activate Your Community

Join Be Social Change on Monday, May 11th from 7PM to 9PM for Transformative Storytelling – Using Narrative to Communicate, Inspire, and Activate Your Community with Lee-Sean Huang, Cofounder and Creative Director of FoossaRegister now using coupon code LeeSean25 to get 25% off.

Storytelling is more than a marketing tool. It’s a management tool.

In this class, we uncover the narrative structures and strategies used by social change practitioners and entrepreneurs for building community and inspiring action. This is a workshop for makers and social entrepreneurs who want to strengthen their skills in storytelling to transform themselves, their teams, and their broader communities.  Storytelling is a powerful tool for building a shared identity, for facilitating mutual understanding, and for facilitating collective action.

We will draw upon successful storytelling methodologies and strategies from the fields of social activism, marketing, and the arts. We will examine and decode examples of successful (and not so successful) storytelling. This class will get “hands on” with activities and exercises that will encourage participants to practice their new storytelling skills.


  • Why storytelling is important for social change
  • What are the essential elements and structures of a good story
  • How to find and craft compelling stories
  • How to adapt and refine your storytelling
  • What are some of the possible applications of storytelling
  • How to integrate one’s personal and professional stories
  • How to use stories to stand out in a crowd
  • How to imbue stories with values and emotion


  • Professionals, entrepreneurs, creatives, and communications strategists/marketers ready to focus on company and brand storytelling
  • Professionals who have an idea for a project, organization or business that will drive change
  • Professionals who already use storytelling in their work looking to find ways to systematize and refine their approach
  • Professionals curious about how storytelling can enrich their work.

Learn more and register on Eventbrite>>

How (Not) to Design Meaningful Civic Conversations

My latest post on Medium: How (Not) To Design Meaningful Civic Conversations – Lessons from Starbucks’ ‪#‎RaceTogether‬ campaign controversy; why it’s important to talk to strangers; and strategies for designing dialogue

How (Not) to Design Meaningful Civic Conversations

Learn Design Thinking @ Cornell NYC


Learn to be a Design Thinker at Cornell. Design Thinking, is the practice pioneered by top innovation firm IDEO, taught at Stanford University and used by some of the worlds’ most innovative companies. Cornell Executive Business Education has built upon this design and added an increased element of applicability to your everyday business life as well as an element of how do you lead innovation back on the job which is vital in the current market. It allows organizations to innovate & solve problems quickly around the needs of key stakeholders. This innovation methodology helps organizations to unlock hidden customer needs and build customer ideas into breakthrough solutions. It works for business to consumer, business to business and for nonprofits.

What is it?

This intensive, two-day skill-building workshop in New York City on May 7-8, 2015 is designed to introduce business leaders to this innovation methodology. It is part of the Cornell Executive Business Education delivered by the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University.

Led by a team of Cornell experts, Tracy Brandenburg and Toddi Gutner, you will learn a new way to generate innovative ideas, how to get to know your customers better, and design an innovative solution to a complex, real-world business problem.

You will hear from, Claudia Kotchka, Senior Executive and Change Agent who successfully led an innovation culture transformation at Procter & Gamble. A pioneer in innovation practices, she led the integration of design, innovation, and strategy while globalizing the design capability of P&G and currently advises Fortune 500 Companies on Innovation and Design.

You will introduced to practical tools and techniques that you can implement in your workplace to generate fresh ideas that improve business performance. New York City will be your “classroom” as you develop consumer insight strategies and learn world-class best practices in the competitive environment.

What Can You Expect to Learn?

Multi-disciplinary teams learn the process to solve challenges quickly and cheaply. Participants can expect to learn:

  • Techniques for building empathy in order to understand human needs and desires
  • How to generate a compelling a design vision based on deep insights gleaned from fieldwork
  • Effective brainstorming techniques to generate and select innovative ideas
  • How to do rapid, low-resolution prototyping and understand its importance in the innovation process
  • How to test prototypes with real users and make multiple iterations based on user feedback
  • The ability to implement the Design Thinking process in any organization

Throughout, you will benefit from Cornell’s extensive connections, Ivy League faculty expertise, and an immersive learning process. At the end of the program, successful graduates will receive a Cornell Executive Business Education certificate of completion.

Who Should Attend?

The program is designed for middle to senior managers and business owners who want to strengthen their skills as innovation leaders.

Building on the idea that all managers and leaders can be innovative in their roles and organizations, the program focuses on developing skills, tools, and practices that can be applied immediately to transform ideas into action.

When and Where is it?

Thursday, May 7th; workshop 8am-5pm; cocktails and dinner 6-9pm
Friday, May 8th; workshop 8am-5pm

Cornell Financial Engineering Manhattan
55 Broad Street
New York, NY

$3,990.00 per person for two-day intensive, including meals, cocktails.
Organizations that send multiple participants will receive discount.

Registration Link:
Note: Enrollment is limited to a first-come, first-serve basis to the first 40 registrants.

If you would like additional information about this program, please contact Toddi Gutner at
If you would like additional information about our Individual Executive Education programs, please contact Devin Bigoness (Executive Director for Cornell Executive Business Education) at

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