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Come hone your skills, learn new approaches–and discuss big-picture questions about design, power, equity, and joy

Learn more about the conference theme here. Conference logistics are here. Meet our graphic facilitator, Sam Bradd


Dr. Pierce Otlhogile-Gordon

Director of Equity Innovation Studio at Think Rubix

Keynote: Practicing Just Transformation: Building Equity Design Into Pedagogy

Dr. Pierce Otlhogile-Gordon is an innovation catalyst, researcher, facilitator, and evaluator, impassioned by the space between transformation and liberation. 

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Maryam Mohiuddin Ahmed

Founding Director, Social Innovation Lab (Pakistan); Senior Fellow, Social Innovation Canada

Keynote: TBA

Maryam Mohiuddin Ahmed is currently a Senior Fellow at Social Innovation Canada supporting their Financialization of Housing Lab, a Senior Consultant at the Center for Social Innovation, an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Foresight Canada, and pursuing a Doctoral degree in Sustainability Management at the University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Environment.  

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Dr. Jaspal S. Sandhu

Executive Vice President, Hopelab; Professor of Practice, University of California, Berkeley

Design is an Essential Medicine

Jaspal Sandhu is Executive Vice President at Hopelab, a social innovation lab and impact investor at the intersection of tech and youth mental health. He also teaches interdisciplinary design and entrepreneurship at UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health, where he served as the Fung Fellowship’s faculty lead from 2016-2021.

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Featured Presentations

Dr. Jannick Friis Christensen

Postdoctoral Researcher at Copenhagen Business School

Workshop: Engaging in Norm-Critical Design Thinking

Jannick Friis Christensen, PhD, is a Postdoctoral Researcher at Copenhagen Business School and Theme Lead for gender and sexuality in the CBS Diversity and Difference Business-in-Society Research Platform.

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Chrystia Chudczak

Founder & CEO of DECIDIUM

Discussion: Reimagining Ukraine Through Design

Chrystia Chudczak is the founder & CEO of DECIDIUM, a global design studio based in Ottawa, Canada. Chrystia is inspired by the power of design to change the human experience for good.

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Tabea Berg

Faculty at Royal Roads University & Doctoral Researcher (Athabasca)

Discussion: The Vulnerability of Design Thinking: Helping Novices Feel Safe and Free to “Get Out of the Box”

Tabea Berg is an Associate Faculty member and Team Coach at Royal Roads University. She has been designing and facilitating design thinking experiences, most often in post-secondary education, for over six years. She has worked in post-secondary education for over 13 years as an administrator, course designer, instructor, facilitator, and team coach. Her industry experience includes a range of creative projects as an executive, writer, and communications and marketing consultant.

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Katherine Ziff

Faculty at Mount Royal University & Doctoral Researcher (Royal Roads)

Tips & Tools: Teams, Tools, and Trust in Facilitating Design Thinking

Katherine Ziff has many years’ experience facilitating design thinking activities and leading teams of design thinking practitioners in science centres and childrens museums in the United States and Canada. She has also taught design thinking courses in the Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation programs at Mount Royal University and brought design thinking practices to libraries, community groups, and innovative teams in municipal government. Her research applies a new materialist lens to understanding the factors that contribute to the function (and dysfunction) of design teams.

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Dr. Angèle Beausoleil

Professor of Business Design and Innovation & Academic Director of the Business Design Initiative, Rotman School of Management

Workshop: Teaching and Measuring Innovation Literacy Through Design

Dr. Angèle Beausoleil is the professor of Business Design and Innovation, and academic director of the Business Design Initiative, at the Rotman School of Management. She completed her PhD in design-mediated innovation at the University of British Columbia, after spending 25 years designing services, products and innovation processes inside large and small organizations.

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Gordon Alexander

CTO for Co-Creation, Kyndryl Canada

Session Title: TBA

Kyndryl, the world’s largest IT infrastructure services provider, features design thinking and collaborative co-creation as key to addressing business challenges.