Maggie, who redesigned our government?

It appears someone has redesigned our government originally designed "for the people, by the people."

Did we miss the RFP for this one?

Here is how we heard about this redesign. Maggie Macnab will be speaking at FUSE about design built on the "power of nature" and how this increases understanding of visual communications, globally. The speech is going to be fantastic, judging from the short Skype encounter we had this week. It started with all the typical nuances and could have stayed on such a path. But, Maggie Macnab, adjunct professor, author and mom, has become rather impatient with situations representing bad design. This combined with a passion for critical thinking – the dynamite was lit.

Here's the premise.

Everything is designed, some things are designed with the wrong balance of form, function and intention. Yes, the three legged stool, while it isn't hard to balance three legs, it can get out of whack if we're not paying proper attention. Think Tropicana. Yes, we may be facing a government redesign happening right before our eyes, and you have to wonder is it a Tropicana design or taking a better form?

Is our government still "for the people?" 

So, let's think about the design of our current government situation and look at one specific behavior which has been designed by someone. Buyouts of large corporations like auto manufacturers, insurance providers, credit card services, banks, etc. It does keep a large number of people employed, but small businesses employ the largest percentage of our population. It does keep large organizations producing whatever economic benefit they create in our economy. But, some may wonder what economic benefit exists with an organization is clearly under water and unable to pay its debts.

Is it "by the people?"

Well, one quarter of our population (do the math) did elect each of the parties in power at any moment in time. But, some might say if only half the country votes, how can a government be "by the people." We, the people, are given more freedoms and rights than any known government known. But, we seem to be taking these for granted and not showing up to vote, participate, discuss, or get involved in the future of our country.

My conclusion? Someone has redesigned our government while we've been sleeping on a hill beneath the apathetic tree.

If you've made it this far into the post, you may wonder, what this has to do with a conference on design? Well, we believe in the power of good design. We have seen it work for the betterment of organizations of all sizes. We have seen what design thinking can do and the same principles apply to the design of these organizations we call government. We just need to see them from atop the trees instead of napping below.

As you might expect, this wasn't all covered in my conversation with Professor Macnab,  but we touched on the topic, and the passion was there. If we had a few beers in front of us and enough time, I am certain the discussion would have reached great depth.

Our current government has some examples of "bad design" no matter what political party you put yourself in, it really doesn't matter. It is what it is. Let's call for a redesign.

Now, this is beyond the conversation with Maggie, but I know she would agree, we need to participate. We need better design. Maggie, are you with us? Do you know anyone who could write a redesign of the government RFP?

Book: Design by Nature

Here are some of the things you'll likely hear in Maggie's speech.

Design with the power of nature // Understand the universal qualities of pattern and shape // Develop more appreciation of nature // Integrate the power of intuition for more effective globally understood visual communications // Create and experience more meaningful work

Here's what you should be listening for in Maggie's speech.

Design thinkers using natural systems to design a better life // How influential design is and can be in our society // Redesign bad systems into good systems // Swearing when you just can't take it anymore.



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