Two editions of the well-received book by our students in the SVA MFA in Design for Social Innovation: : ways of seeing, working, and being necessary for shifting conversations in the complexity of social systems.

Fit principals Marc Rettig and Hannah du Plessis co-teach a course in the MFA in Design for Social Innovation at SVAin New York. To complete the course, students chose two topics covered in the class and produce book spreads that summarize the topic, play with it visually, and suggest places to learn more. Both the 2013 and 2014 editions are presented below. While the two contain many of the same topics, the visuals and descriptions of each student differ greatly.

In the last years we have broken the course into two: Practically we are taking students through a series of exercises culminating in them hosting group dialogues. Personally students hand in a journal that captures their personal reflections on readings, assignments and practices. Here is a list of the personal skills students practice to embody over a course of a semester.

Major sections of the book


The challenge of designing for social innovation
Some approaches to designing for social situations
Some essential skills
Facilitating dialog and co-creation


Understanding transformation
What informs behavior?
Barriers to transformation
Cultivating healthy relationships



Note about viewing PDFs
If you download from Issuu, know that the book looks best and is easiest to read when viewed in two-page-side-by-side. Acrobat users will want to select view > page display > view cover page in two page view.