BETTER OFF FOR IT: Participants at A Better World By Design 2012, which brought together students from around country with professionals in architecture, engineering, education, research, technology and business.
Within the overarching goal of creating a better world, students from Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design have organized the sixth annual conference, A Better World By Design, focused on the theme “Pause and Effect.”
“The theme is to encourage students and professionals of all backgrounds to put down the products they’ve been working with and spend three days learning new skills, meeting new people and looking at things in a new light,” said Alexander Hadik, co-chair of the conference, which runs Sept. 27-29 on the campuses of the two colleges.
A Better World By Design brings together engineers, designers, entrepreneurs, policymakers, academic leaders and students to collaborate on a limitless range of problems, policies and issues.
A team of collaborators at the conference, for instance, might design new apps for a cellphone with entrepreneurship in mind, said Hadik, a computational-biology major planning to graduate from Brown in 2015.
Stepping back from the daily routine and being immersed in the conference can have a positive long-term effect, said Hadik, who participated in two previous conferences. “It affected the way I do research. I use the design process as a problem-solving tool,” said Hadik. “If you’re stuck on an idea or problem, you break it down, ask new questions and consider possible approaches.”
The influence of an innovative group can be powerful, said Hadik, who is collaborating on organization of the student-run conference with co-chair Hannah Bebbington, a Brown University economics major.
Affiliated with Brown Engineers Without Borders, the conference spotlights speakers who are innovative in their approach to social issues, education, technology, business and design.