Our Vision

Community of Practice

Design for Health is a global group of funders, implementers, and designers, spearheaded by the United States Agency for International Development’s Center for Innovation and Impact and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, committed to increasing the understanding, appropriate use, and value of design as an approach to help achieve global health goals.

Global Health Practitioners

For this group, including both funders and implementing partners, we hope to provide resources and guidance that increase the understanding, appropriate use, and value of design as a complementary approach to better address the challenges we all encounter in our work.

Design Community

Our goal for the Design Community is to better communicate the value of design in global health, clarify how design can integrate in global health programs, and attract the best designers in the global health space and support their engagement.

Global Community

We strive to listen to the people we seek to impact and include them as participants in the design and implementation of holistic and measurable global health interventions.

Iterating on a Roadmap

The Design for Health community is on a journey to mainstream design across global health. To guide our community’s efforts in integrating design across global health, the Design for Health community have gathered together to share opportunities and challenges related to the successful application of design in global health and co-create a vision for the future.

A woman shows two health care officials a mock-up on a smartphone

Image courtesy of Catapult Design

2019: Dakar, Senegal

Design for Health – Nio Far Dakar brought the community of practice together in April 2019, with the purpose to build on the work we had done at HCDUncut in Berlin in 2017. We wanted to begin driving our vision forward by co-creating actionable prototypes and a clear roadmap for realizing our shared vision. The Design for Health community synthesized the opportunity areas identified at HCD Uncut  into 5 actionable missions to work on during the convening.

Achieving Scale

Identifying pathways to scale and appropriate channels for operationalizing design in global health projects.

Design Curriculum

Developing a design curriculum for global health.

Managing Design

Provide guidance for global health contracting to develop, evaluate, and better manage design approaches.

Return on Design

Articulating and demonstrating the returns of investment (ROI) for the application of design in global health.

Integrated Approaches

Teaming design with other behavior change approaches in global health.

During Nio Far Dakar, teams identified the key challenges and opportunity areas within each of the mission topical areas and developed a series of prototypes and roadmaps in response to those challenges.

After the Nio Far Dakar convening, a broad set of advisors and committed Design for Health partners collaborated and synthesized the output of 5 missions into 4 thematic areas organized around a series of activities.

  • Building the market for design
  • Strengthening the practice of design
  • Documenting & measuring the impact of design
  • Evolving the community of practice

The 2019 Design for Health roadmap presents an action plan of how the activities can help us realize the goal of mainstreaming design in global health and development across these specific thematic areas.

2017: Berlin, Germany

In November 2017, the first group of donors, implementers, and designers gathered at HCDUncut in Berlin, Germany to share opportunities and challenges related to the successful application of design in global health and co-create a vision for the future. In the time since that first convening in Berlin, a broad set of advisors and committed partners collaborated to identify 7 opportunity areas to support the realization of the vision and develop the resources available on the Design for Health website.

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