In response to your three criteria:

1. Lisa Rudnick (Senior Researcher and Project Manager, United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research) and myself are now involved in crafting a "framework document" for on evidence-based program design for the reintegration of ex-combatants in post-conflict societies. This is in the service of the Inter-Agency Working Group (IAWG) of the UN on DDR (Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration of Excombatants. The IAWG has about 14 UN member organizations in addition to the World Bank, International Organization for Migration, and International Labor Organization. If the framework document is adopted next year, it will introduce a new approach to designing field operations (itself a "service"). We are taking the "design" aspect of this very seriously.

2. Our work on strategic design and public policy can be referenced under my name on, and key documents can be found on both UNIDIR's website ( and the R&D page at The Policy Lab ( We are indeed paying close attention to the design thinking discussions — broadly understood — and the intersection of design and management, as well as design and social research. So I would absolutely say we are doing this in the context of on-going developments in the design field — though admittedly we're on the extreme edge. This work has global implications.

3. It has not reached the stage of results or sustainability. Rather, we now need to finish the framework, get it adopted (itself a political activity as well), build the prototype for the reintegration tool during phase II next year (funding and political support provided …), then pilot it in key locations in 2013. We anticipate Libya and possibly Sudan. But there's a lot of tarmac between here and there …

You can contact Lisa as well. I'll pass on her contact info.

Best wishes,

Dr. Derek B. Miller

The Policy Lab
321 Columbus Ave.
Seventh Floor of the Electric Carriage House
Boston, MA 02116
United States of America

+1 617 440 4409

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On Sep 18, 2011, at 10:02 PM, Jean Schneider wrote:

> Hello,
> For the conference that I am organising next January in Paris, and that some of you already know, I would be very grateful if you could help me with the following.
> I would like to devote a day to the "big picture" : it has been a strange year, with Fukushima and the (un)sustainability of our energy production, the Arab "revolutions", the economical collapse of Europe etc. Nothing that has so much to do, in direct terms, with design as we deal with it on a daily basis. But not anything that the profession can ignore either, as they are likely to reshape societies in deep.
> Quite close in fact, to the approach of Mau and the Institute without boundaries that gave birth to the book "massive change".
> So the question is : do you have in mind any initiative that :
> 1/ has been designed to address one societal challenge (not a technical one, unless there is a scale effect), whether it is local or regional or even broader is not important,
> 2/ is built on a paradigm that, in your view, embeds some kind of "design thinking" (lets keep it loose here) : e.g. in its development (participation, for instance), its governance, its economical model etc.;
> 3/ has achieved some results and is sustainable.
> I'd be grateful if, in such case, you could give me some information (e.g. website, contact person...).
> Best regards,
> Jean
> Jean Schneider
> Chargé de projet APCI / Project manager APCI
> [log in to unmask]  +33(0)661 350 357