argodesign, IBM & UT Austin on the future of design

Austin design leaders Doreen Lorenzo, Doug Powell, and Mark Rolston led a discussion about the future of the design industry during the third annual Fast Company Innovation Festival, the major business conference that takes over New York City each fall. Lorenzo has just been appointed assistant dean of the new School of Design and Creative Technologies at UT Austin. Doug Powell is a Distinguished Designer at IBM, directing a global program to scale design and design thinking across the company. Rolston is a UX pioneer, former chief creative at frog design, and now leads his own product design and innovation consultancy, argodesign.

Their session was moderated by veteran technology journalist Harry McCracken, who asked the panelists to reflect on the new role for design now that it has become a table stake for business. For every organization that succeeds at making design core to its culture and its offerings, many others fail. At the same time, designers are being called to do more — to think more critically about how technology affects our economy and our society.

Lorenzo, Rolston, and Powell shared how they are working together within and beyond Austin’s “Silicon Hills” to transform design for the 21st century. They discussed how to reshape the design field to grapple with new advances in computing and automation, and how to address a global shortage of creative talent — by educating a new generation of creative professionals with business and design skills at the core.

 

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