- Sami Nerenberg
- A San Francisco native, I am 5/8 educator and 5/8 social entrepreneur. Trained as an industrial designer at the Rhode Island School of Design, I have continued my quest for meaningful work at the intersection of design/social impact/education. This has led me to teaching at Pratt Institute, Brown University's Community Environmental College and at my alma mater, where I founded the advanced studio, Design for Social Entrepreneurship, as the youngest adjunct faculty. After working for Design that Matters and purchasing the urls, designforamerica.com/org on the night of the 2008 presidential elections, I am now the Director of Operations for Design for America (i.e. dream job). (The views expressed in this blog are solely my own and do not reflect the views of DFA)
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
Curtains: Hand made-$100 for fabric
Standing lamp: $0 (roommate was getting rid of it)
Red lamp: $0 Another office give away from Grunfos when they moved out.
Bought a bundle of stuff from last roommate including:
shelf, side table, two closets, drawer set, white desk for
$100 (pretty sweet deal I think)
Silk Screen Poster: $300 (Expensive I know. I bought it for my boyfriend while in Charlottesville, Va. It's an original silk screened poster that was used in schools in Germany for biology classes. It was a gift to him and now I'm "borrowing" it.)
Everything else: See previous room.
I had the pleasure of reading Emily Pilloton's (founder of Project H) recent call to action on the ID mega site- Core77. I recommend that everyone read it.
Very much in the same vein as my last post, below is my response to the article:
Emily, I could not agree with you more that we are now approaching a time where the world's most valuable renewable resource, Creativity, ought to be used on the greater good, as oppose to the greater dollar. We have now reached a time where we must shift our focus and look at design in its entirety; as a tool to overcome global problems, not just primarily to promote consumerism and the economy.
I work for Design that Matters. We do indeed have a different type of client. Social entrepreneurs are our clients; entrepreneurs working to have positive social impact on communities in need. We find how products can improve their services, acting as an enabler as Emily describes. I've been with them both as a volunteer and as full-time staff now for over a year, and strongly believe in what they are doing, and urge designers to gear their focus and energy to similar issues.
Additionally I ask: Once these 'developing' nations become 'developed' what type of infrastructure do we need in place to ensure that their resource consumption and pollution rate does not mimic that of the West?
With Globalization on the rise, let's make sure the rest of the world does not follow in our footsteps as we have been walking, but rather, let's set a new path while learning from each other.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
What is Racism?... The woman asks.
Power displacement?... Yes!
The subtle implementations of policy and daily action that come together to create a system of oppression?... Yessss!
It is not only about what has happened in the past,
It is about what we are going to Do for tomorrow
In REACTION to our history.
What is white privilege? The woman asks.
Being able to walk into a corner store without being followed by security? ... Yes.
Walking down the street and people giving you smiles instead of crossing to the other side? … Yes.
Knowing that life is gonna be just fine and everything will work out? … Yess.
This white woman standing in front of you is accepting her whiteness
But not denying her responsibility to be a catalyst for change.
One step at a time
We collect our dimes
To save up enough strength
To pull our own weight.
So what do we dooo? The people call out.
Bring yourself to account each day I say.
Educate yourself, open your eyes and see
Just because white is the absence of color
Does not make it the norm.
White people are NOT the norm.
That privilege has just been displaced there.
This sense of White Privilege is one of the main causes of the injustices we see in our American Society today. By not considering the consequences of our own actions or the subtleties of the prejudice around us, we are doomed to perpetuating a cycle of oppression. Environmental Injustice is a consequence of this cycle, and to get out of it, white people in particular need to open their eyes to both the social and environmental damage we create.