In the news

How You Can Propose Ideas for Brownsville

Sunday, January 30, 2011

GOOD was asked to attend The Design Difference, a charrette held by the Japan Society, Common Ground, and the Designers Accord. In this series, we're examining design solutions to social problems and ways for designers to contribute pro bono work for the proposed solutions.

In early November, dozens of designers, activists, and urban leaders convened for The Design Difference, a problem-solving workshop to develop fresh ideas and creative thinking for Brownsville, an underserved urban neighborhood in Brooklyn.

Using Design to Conduct a Problem-Solving Workshop

Friday, January 21, 2011

Design is a process made for solving problems. Yet in the last few years, that process has come under fire when designers have attempted to solve problems that have little to do with their own experience. Last year, Bruce Nussbaum stoked a vicious debate when he wondered if designers working to solve problems in developing nations might be part of a new breed of imperialism.

And it's happening right here at home, too.

In Brownsville, Enormous Urban Challenges, and Hope

Thursday, January 13, 2011

In this series, we're examining design solutions to social problems and ways for designers to contribute pro bono work for the proposed solutions.

As I ride a bus through the neighborhood of Brownsville in Brooklyn two days after Halloween, I see ghosts. The location of a once-thriving famous pickle factory. The abandoned steel plant laced with razor wire. An empty main street that once was filled with bustling furniture stores.

The Street-Level Solution

Friday, December 24, 2010

When I was growing up, one of my father’s favorite sayings (borrowed from the humorist Will Rogers) was: “It isn’t what we don’t know that causes the trouble; it’s what we think we know that just ain’t so.” One of the main insights to be taken from the 100,000 Homes campaign and its strategy to end chronic homelessness, which I wrote about in Tuesdays’ column, is that, until recently, our society though

A Plan to Make Homelessness History

Monday, December 20, 2010

This is a story about a plan to end chronic homelessness in the United States. It’s not an indeterminate “war on homelessness,” but a methodical approach to do away with a major social problem. Each day, roughly 700,000 people in the country are homeless. About 120,000 are chronically homeless. They often live on the streets for years and have mental disabilities, addiction problems and life-threatening diseases like heart disease, cancer and diabetes.

Higher Ground

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Most homeless shelters don't have ballrooms. Walking into the elegant lobby of New York's old Prince George Hotel, with its richly hued woodwork, feels like you've entered some Merchant Ivory movie, not a residence for displaced individuals. It's the surprising creation of Rosanne Haggerty, founder and director of the nonprofit Common Ground. Her organization creates similarly attractive facilities across the city— some elaborate renovations like this one, some built from scratch. The goal is a benign and inclusive form of gentrification.