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ISO Fantastic Fall Intern

Posted by linda on September 07, 2011

We incubate some of the things that come out of our work with our clients. It’s the perfect way to stay involved in implementing the ideas we developed with them. Right now, we have one non-profit incubating with us that needs an intern. Read on if you’re interested in a pretty fascinating and interesting internship. We’ve already had a couple super-smart summer interns and we hope to find another to join the team.

Fall 2011
We’re looking for a stellar intern to help us with an immense challenge for one of our clients. We are looking for a student (or recent graduate) who could work in our offices in Sausalito, CA, who is interested in both research and using design to change the built environment we live in. We are looking for someone excited about mindboggling amounts of research and who is able to transform that research into meaningful insights and tools for a client of ours.

The non-profit we’re working with seeks to have the greatest impact on design possible, by changing what is considered necessary for a successful urban or community design. The non-profit works with cities and communities to help them build an environment that supports people through their lifecycle and enables both the cities and people to thrive.

This role requires the ability to conduct primary research, interviews, getting “out into the field”, writing and editing skills. As well as being able to prototype ideas and scenarios, and create strategic and practical plans of action for design and implementation. You must have excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Keep reading…
Truly successful design isn’t just done with the user in mind, but instead with the actual users participating in the design itself. You’ll be looking at what is currently out there in terms of tools, principles and possibly develop a new set applicable to the non-profit.  As well as take the existing assets and experience the organization has, and repurpose them.

You’ll also be working closely with and applying the intellectual framework developed by the non-profit to show how it can lead to project success, even failure or possible places for intervention

And if there is time you’ll be looking to develop a method or system for measuring the impact of using the framework and the designs that emerge from using it.

Who might you be?

If any of this sounds truly interesting, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch. If you’re the type of person who relishes at the thought of hardcore research, finding every piece of worthy information about a relevant topic and pitching its importance, or someone who is energized by a large and loosely defined scope of direction and can easily turn that into smaller, more manageable and practical tasks, then we should meet. If you’re driven to take on large and immensely important tasks that have a direct impact on making the world a better place to live in, then definitely let us know. If you’re highly collaborative, super-hardworking individual, and enthusiastic about helping a non-profit, with an exceptional cause meet their goal, then what are you waiting for? Write us an incredible cover letter, send some examples of your work and experience, along with your resume. And a reference from someone we might already know.

What you’ll get in return?

While you’ll be working for our client, a non-profit urban design organization who is preparing to take its work out to Haiti, possibly Cambodia and Japan, you’ll also get to work alongside a highly creative and successful transformation company. Central uses the design process to transform organizations to design better futures. For themselves, their stakeholders, customers and the people they’re trying to help.

So you’ll get exposed to the design process, along with a very innovative process for redesigning the built environment we all live in. If you have any interest in architecture, planning, permaculture, community engagement, measuring social impact and biology or neuroscience, then you might find this work very inspiring.

This paid internship is for the fall, it begins when we find the right candidate and run for 8-10 weeks depending on your availability. All candidates must be able to work in our offices in Sausalito.

Please no calls, or drop-ins.

Email your stuff to: iamperfect [ at ] centralstory.com

Look forward to hearing from you.

 

 

They said so, and it was done so.

Posted by Damien on June 17, 2011

Weightshift came in on Tuesday for a working session, and by Thursday they’d transformed what you’re looking at. Yet anether great experience collaborating with them, made even sweeter by the fact that they stopped everything else to do so, for two days this week. As they sat down at the large table in Studio 6, Naz explained that they’d like to launch the new site before Scott got on a plane on Friday. Scott is off back to Chicago today, and we’ve got a shiny new site.

And yes, there are some subtle changes. In how we explain what it is we do. Now with a little more focus, and some examples to explain it, we’re able to tell the story of how we create value for our clients and their customers or stakeholders. We’re less a design firm, and more a consulting firm who uses the design process to help our clients. Think IDEO/Participle + StoneYamashita + Project M. We understand how design changes things, people, groups, systems and the way people see the world. So we embed a creative approach to helping organizations transform themselves. And much of the time we work on transforming the relationships that they have with their customers or the people they’re trying to help. The ‘trying to help’ comes from the fact that much of our work is with Foundations or Non-profits, and the relationship that they have with their grantees or communities is typically very different from how a brand interacts with a consumer.

Also new this week is that we’ve moved in a new organization we’re incubating. The non-profit is working from our studios as we help them relaunch and develop plans for the future. This is an ideal situation where we get to closely collaborate with our client as we work side-by-side with them to launch the ideas we’ve developed over the last year. We get to support them by managing the infrastructure that can get in the way of focusing on creating the successes they need to have in order to grow and create impact. And we’ll help them grow their team to ensure this can happen. So stay tuned for more, especially if you’re looking for truly exciting work in the community + city redesigning space. And yes, we will mention the company once they’ve relaunched. We don’t mean to be so vague. We just have be so.

Earlier this week, Cameron Sinclair and some of his development team from Architecture for Humanity dropped by. Cameron on an electric bicycle of course. They spent a couple hours with us going through projects and talking to us about ways we could get involved. We found many possible opportunities and we’re really looking forward to making them happen over the next few months. Sometimes it is hard not to get too excited about the fact that these kinds of people come to spend time with us to find ways to work together.

And then yesterday I had a very interesting lunch with the editor of Places Journal, on Design Observer. If you’ve not read last weeks Architect Barbie piece yet, you should do so once you’ve finished here. Places is a long-format blog that used to be a print journal founded nearly 30 years ago by faculty from MIT and Berkeley which publishes articles on contemporary architecture, landscape and urbanism, with particular emphasis on the public realm as physical place and social ideal.

Those of you that might know me personally, know that I have a fetish for printed matter, journals, magazines and books. So some of the conversation with Nancy Levinson did find its way to print versus online. I’ve always had a tremendous amount of respect for Design Observer and continue to be so with what Winterhouse are doing with the growing media empire. It was great to spend a little time with an architect who is helping shape the public discussion of the future of physical space in such a rich way. I’m doing everything I can to stop myself from suggesting that we resurrect the printed version of the Journal….

The week isn’t over yet, which means we definitely have to check in with the Ride Alabamboo team riding across the States. We need to ask them if Cameron Sinclair can have one of their T Shirts. He loves them. Earlier this week they were in Paris. In Arkansas that is. Check on their progress here, and if nothing else, shoot them an email of support to help them with this epic journey of theirs. We’re going to start on plans for making their arrival an event to remember.

I just got off the phone with the documentary producer Patrick Sammon, who’s put together an excellent team to tell the Alan Turing story. As a personal project, I’m trying to continue the family history of supporting Turing by helping Patrick with bringing the film to the US by raising some funds to do so and with other things. If you don’t already know, Turing was an important figure in computer history and his direct impact on saving a tremendous amount of lives during the second world War. His story is unfortunately a tragic one and this film, for the first time, tells the story of who Alan Turing was and what he did for his country and science overall. And as you can imagine, the film making process is an incredibly difficult one and so I’ll be looking for help in the future with what I’m doing. If you’re in the UK, you’ll be able to see this film on TV later this year.

Help Wanted: Summer Jobs

Posted by Damien on June 07, 2011

We incubate some of the things that come out of our work with our clients. It is the perfect way to stay involved in implementing the ideas we developed with them. Right now, we have one non-profit incubating with us that needs some help over the summer. Read on if you’re interested in some pretty fascinating and interesting summer work. We already have one super-smart Summer intern. We hope to find four more to join the team immediately.

June 2011
We’re looking for four stellar summer interns to help us with an immense challenge for one of our clients. We are looking for students (or recent graduates) who could work in our offices in Sausalito, CA, who are interested in both research and using design to change the built environment we live in. We are looking to fill roles that involve a tremendous amount of research and shaping that research into meaningful insights and tools for a client of ours.

We have four key areas we’re looking to fill, which we explain a little below. If you think you’re best suited for one in particular, suggest so. It will make it much easier to see your value and likely enable us to get back you quickly.

The non-profit we’re working with seeks to have the greatest impact on design possible, by changing what’s included in what is considered necessary for a successful urban or community design. The non-profit works with cities and communities to help them build an environment that supports people through their lifecycle to enable the cities and people to thrive.

All roles require the ability to conduct primary research, interviews, getting “out into the field”, writing and editing skills. As well as being able to prototype ideas and scenarios, and create strategic and practical plans of action for design and implementation. You must have excellent written and verbal communication skills.

1. Community Engagement
Truly successful design isn’t just done with the user in mind, but instead with the actual users participating in the design itself. We’re looking to develop the tools, principles and complete process of community engagement for our client. As well as take the existing assets and experience the organization has, and repurpose them.

2. Practical Tools
Central has been working with the client over the last year to create tools that help teach and engage people in working together to redesign city blocks or the environments they live in. We’re looking to continue the work in researching and develop a suite of teaching and engagement tools that can help fund the non-profit sustainably.

3 + 4. Built Impact + Assessment Tools
We’re looking to use the intellectual framework developed by the non-profit to create an assessment tool for finished and built projects around the world. Working with other non-profit organizations, we’re looking to see where the framework can show project successes, failure or possible places for intervention.

We’re also looking to develop a method or system for measuring the impact of using the framework and the designs that emerge from using it.

Who might you be?

If any of this sounds truly interesting, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch. If you’re the type of person who relishes at the thought of hardcore research, finding every piece of worthy information about a relevant topic and pitching its importance, or someone who is energized by a large and loosely defined scope of direction and can easily turn that into smaller, more manageable and practical tasks, then we should meet. If you’re driven to take on large and immensely important tasks that have a direct impact on making the world a better place to live in, then definitely let us know. If you’re highly collaborative, super-hardworking individual, and enthusiastic about helping a non-profit, with an exceptional cause meet their goal, then what are you waiting for? Write us an incredible cover letter, send some examples of your work and experience, along with your resume. And a reference from someone we might already know.

What you’ll get in return?

While you’ll be working for our client, a non-profit urban design organization who is preparing to take its work out to Haiti, possibly Cambodia and Japan, you’ll also get to work alongside a highly creative and successful transformation company. Central uses the design process to transform organizations to design better futures. For themselves, their stakeholders, customers and the people they’re trying to help.

So you’ll get exposed to the design process, along with a very innovative process for redesigning the built environment we all live in. If you have any interest in architecture, planning, permaculture, community engagement, measuring social impact and biology or neuroscience, then you might find this work very inspiring.

These paid internships are for the summer, starting immediately and run for 8-10 weeks depending on your availability. All must be able to work in our offices in Sausalito.

Please no calls, or drop-ins.

Email your stuff to: iamperfect [ at ] centralstory.com

Look forward to hearing from you.