Arizona chapter wins funding for design-thinking board game

Parallel – Game of Design: a board game that teaches design thinking


AIGA National awarded the Arizona chapter of AIGA an Innovate grant of $15,000 for the development of a design-thinking board game.

The goal of the of the board game, Parallel – Game of Design, is to teach high school students about design thinking, problem solving, and the importance of empathy, without losing any of the fun and excitement of a traditional board game.

Located in a fictional, but familiar world, where regions inhabited by millions of people are devastated by both natural and made-made disasters, three teams of two players each must design solutions to meet a stream of challenges. Teamwork, creativity, communication, and empathy are required to solve each challenge and will earn each team “Design Cred.” The team with the highest level of Design Cred at the end of the game is the winner.

Initially, the game is being designed to target high school students in underserved areas of the country. After launching the first version of the game, expansion packs will be created that will target different groups of students, with the goal of creating a design-thinking board game with universal appeal.

The Parallel – Game of Design proposal was spearheaded by Jennifer Pace Duran, John Gialanella, and Kimberly Mitchell. Eric Torres provided insight and advice.

The AIGA Innovate fund, formerly known as the Chapter Innovation Fund, is a grant program developed by AIGA National to encourage the more than 70 chapters nationwide to think about the future of design. At its core, AIGA Innovate is an opportunity for each chapter to suggest, develop, and prototype exciting projects for rollout to the wider organization.

“It gave us permission to break away from what was done yesterday, and be truly creative in our approaches to solving problems important to our chapter.” – Pete Klein, Director of Interactive Management, AIGA Minnesota.

Projects must be scalable, sustainable, and serve the needs of AIGA members. Moreover, projects will strive to serve each chapter’s larger design community and extend beyond those communities into our schools, businesses, and governments.

Innovate grants provide the working capital for ideas that come from individual AIGA chapters. $250,000 is awarded each year. The first group of projects was funded in 2015.

By communications
Published June 14, 2016
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