The issues of the design world seem both too big and too small to tackle in an essay since last week’s earthquake in Haiti. As I pored over the heart-wrenching photos it was impossible not to feel the frustrations of my job: Here I am, writing every day about so many intelligent products designed for this very situation but they all seemed so far away from where they were actually needed. How could design really help right now?
A few of those intelligent products will be in the Airstream of Emily Pilloton (one of our GOOD 100 who had a recent star turn on the Colbert Report) as she embarks upon a 25-school traveling exhibition tour featuring products from her book, Design Revolution. But after lecturing for the past few months, Pilloton realized just showing the designed products wouldn’t be enough. So Pilloton worked with her team to create a Design Revolution Toolkit which brings to life many of the methodologies employed both in the work of her non-profit—Project H Design—and in the products she’s showcasing. It’s the perfect example of increasing impact through a culture of sharing: She could simply talk about the products in her trailer, or she could pass along the tools to young designers who could improve upon them.