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The 2016 Conference was the second annual AIGA conference for Government designers. The event took place in Rosslyn, Virginia in the same building as my old Deloitte office. Many of the government's largest agencies were represented, and I captured the content of five presentations throughout the day.
Designers as Innovators
The opening keynote was given by Julie Anixter, the new Executive Director of AIGA. I love what she had to say about the changing roles of designers, who are increasingly being seen as leaders and integral parts of business strategy and innovation.
Visual Information Mapping, FTW!
The audience broke out in applause after Chris Farwell from MAGA Design read off some statistics about the power of visualization and then asked why we are still so dependent on text heavy power point slides. I need a better way to capture such happenings in my doodles so that others can get a better sense of how well the message was received.
My First Intro to 18F
I hadn't heard of 18F before looking into the speakers for this conference, but I am so excited that an organization like this finally exists! Just like their website says, they are doing amazing work to build a 21st century digital government. Erica Deahl talked about some of the goals and opportunity areas that they are striving towards and this is something that everybody in the country will benefit from.
Just like I hadn't heard of 18F, I didn't really know much about the US Digital Service. In her lightning talk, Stephanie Nguyen shared a recent experience of a crazy fast design project with the USDS and Department of Education, and I was so impressed about how well the process was documented and reflected upon given that they just released the app a week prior to the talk.
Stamps are a designers dream
Everyone was completely captivated by Ethel Kessler's walk down memory lane of many iconic and memorable stamps that she has helped design over the years. This talk was so visual that it was super challenging to record-- I found myself mesmerized and then trying to rush to snap photos of things that I could go back in and draw to fill in the empty space (that's a free trade secret right there).
Catherine Madden LLC is a creative consultancy specializing in visual thinking and data storytelling.