Collaborative design is a team effort that combines your subject matter expertise, our design and technical know-how, and the lived experiences of the communities you serve. We work with you to understand your organization's objectives and strategize towards products that can help you achieve greater social impact.
We use human-centred design practices to create products for diverse audiences with a wide range of abilities. On the tech side, we believe in the power of open and actively contribute to the open-source community. We'll discuss with you to decide how your project can take part in the open-source ecosystem.
We specialize in concept development, design strategies, and software development. We work hand in hand with people, across physical and digital environments, to bring the future of social impact to reality.
We partner with creatives in social innovation to re-define the meaning of "doing good".
Whether it is a civic project or a digital product, an initial proof-of-concept is the best way to eliminate assumptions and improve the experiences before it is too late (or too costly) for revisions.
Planning your journey towards greater social impact can be overwhelming. Engage the communities you serve and your team through our co-design workshops.
From simple landing pages and micro-sites to complex web applications, we work with you to create accessible, modern, and responsive digital products.
Nomadic Chats brings you honest conversations on using design and technology for social impact from people who are actually doing it.
In each episode, we speak with someone who is doing creative and impactful work with design and technology in their organization. Our chats range from philosophical questions about digital transformation to practical tips on using new tools.Note: We just started so we don't have a lot of episodes yet, but we're working on it!
Luisa is a partner and design strategist of Nomadic Labs. Her research and work span disciplines including architecture, culture, and studies of the future.
Luisa looks into emerging practices in fields other than design, keeping an eye on forces shaping possible futures. With broad interests and curiosity, Luisa worked on civic tech, installations, and performances alongside artists and community-builders.
software developer, web designer
Sharon is a multi-disciplinary software developer with experience in full-stack web development, web design, graphic design, online communications, and project management.
She is passionate about achieving meaningful impact with technology, which has taken her career on interesting turns from a UN agency in Dakar to a tech startup in Barcelona to a health tech company in Toronto. She's now happily a partner of Nomadic Labs, working with inspiring clients from around the world.
Join Luisa and Sharon every last Friday of the month 3pm - 5pm EDT/EST for our Open Office!
Design and Technology for social impact don't just happen in a vacuum. Wrap up the week with much-needed conversations on topics ranging from collaborative design, emerging social impact models, open-source, to inspirational moments worth sharing with fellow social innovators.
You can also book a 1:1 session to discuss specific digital challenges regarding your organization's social impact initiatives and projects.
Safe Support Chat is a private, anonymous, an encrypted chat service. It features an easily embeddable chatbox that goes a a public-facing website and a custom implementation of the Riot chat app for support providers.
This project was developed in collaboration with Primal Glow Communications and Brent Edwards. Our role was to design and build the embeddable chatbox and customize the Riot web application for use with the chatbox. We additionally built a chatbot to manage some of the backend functions. The whole project is built on the Matrix communication protocol. We also leaned heavily on the extensive technical and user research conducted by Primal Glow Communications. An open source version of the project is available.
Pathways to Care is a community-driven and youth-led systems change project committed to transforming the mental healthcare system for Black children, youth and their families.
As a new project of the Black Health Alliance, we worked with the Pathways to Care team to develop a separate visual identity and a website that effectively communicates their purpose. The website was built to be easy for the team to update as they grow the project and publish new materials.
Trinity Square Café is a registered charity that supports adult clients living with mental health conditions. Participation in weekday café shifts in our downtown Toronto home-style café helps clients develop valuable interpersonal and employability skills.
This project was a collaboration with Kate Skipton to develop a new website that communicates both sides of the organization: the public-facing café as well as the mental health recovery program.
We did the full design of an 8-page brochure for the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) called "Gathering Evidence: How Can Soft Skills Development and Work-based Learning Improve Job Opportunities for Young People? The design included custom graphics and data visualization.
We designed the print edition of a policy brief on Lifelong Learning for the International Labour Organization (ILO). The design included creative photo treatments, illustrations, and basic data visualization.
The Land and the Refinery is the website for an Indigenous-led study of one of the world's oldest refineries.
We led an extensive design process to establish a flexible visual system that reflects the characteristics and identity of the Aamjiwnaang community and the values of the project. The website uses our in-house content management system that allows the project team to easily update and add to the website as their research evolves.
We build several custom components for this website, including:
React Google Sheets Timeline is a configurable timeline that dynamically displays data from a Google Sheet, making it easy to update and maintain. The timeline itself is interactive and allows users to show or hide categories of events from the timeline.
This project was developed for the Land and the Refinery project and released as an open source package.
React Easy Editables is a set of components that make it easy for people to edit website content directly on the page, rather than using a separate admin view. It's intended to give web designers and developers more creative freedom while giving their clients the ability to easily edit their own website. We developed these components for internal use in our in-house content management system and released them as an open source package.
We worked with the International Labour Organization (ILO) to design a 32-page special report on "Skills for a Brighter Future" as part of the ILO's Centenary. We developed a visual system for the report aligned with the ILO Centenary visual guidelines and the overall ILO brand. The report includes custom graphic elements, photo treatments, illustrations, and infographics.
iHRIS, IntraHealth International's free, open source software, helps countries around the world track and manage their health workforce data to improve access to services.
We worked with IntraHealth to redesign the interface of the iHRIS software for their version 5.0 release. The design was based on the Material design framework. We conducted an extensive discovery process that included user interviews, mockups, prototyping, and a development roadmap.
NeedsList is the world’s first online marketplace serving communities displaced by climate change and conflict and disrupting the humanitarian aid space.
We worked with the NeedsList team to redesign the homepage of their online platform in order to better communicate the goals of the company and how it works. The overall objective was to increase the rate of conversions on the platform.
Connecting the Dots is a new initiative of Black History Ottawa (BHO) that aims to share common experiences among members of the African diaspora across Canada.
We worked with Connecting the Dots to create a modern website for the initiative with a separate brand from the BHO. The website uses our point-and-click CMS so admin users can edit the content directly on the page. There is also a submission form for new projects and a simple admin back-end for reviewing and publishing submissions.
Save the Children International originally published this toolkit as a PDF document. We worked with them to develop it into an interactive online resource.
Users can create an account to use the worksheets provided by the toolkit. They can also take the online quiz at the end of each section to test their understanding of the materials. They can then access their completed worksheets and quiz scores on their dashboard. Admin users can edit the content directly on the page through a custom content management system (CMS).
Our client was working with Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO) to facilitate the adoption of a new project management software system. Our client wanted to design a simple, easy-to-use form that would serve as a data gathering tool that could be used on a regular basis as well as a training aide to help users learn to enter the data correctly into the larger (and more complex) software system.
A key requirement of this project is that it needed to be available offline. We developed a website that can store data offline and sync with the database when a connection is available. Users can create an account to save their projects and access them from different devices.
Communauts is a social enterprise based in Uganda which aims for facilitation of livelihood improvement for rural communities while conserving the environment.
We developed a simple yet beautiful website for the organization that showcases natural and cultural attractions of the region. The website is editable through our custom CMS.
The Digital Justice Lab is a new initiative in Canada with a mission to build a more just and equitable future by engaging with diverse communities to build alternative digital futures. Through their branding, the Digital Justice Lab wanted to communicate their approachable, youthful, yet professional nature. We created a logo that captures these traits and that can evolve with the organization.
We were tasked with designing the 80-page final report of the Norway-ILO Programme Cooperation Agreement for 2016-2017. We combined the minimalism of Scandinavian design with the bold colours and textures that characterize the design trends of the East and Southern African countries where the program was operating. We also employed a clear content hierarchy, custom graphics, and relatable images to communicate the program's impact.
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