The Leading by Design Fellows Program will not be offered in 2015 but will re-open for admission in 2016.

Please email Susan Worthman, Director of The Leading by Design Fellows Program,, if you are interested in applying for Summer-Fall 2016.

The Fellows Program meets each month over two days (Friday and Saturday). Each weekend residency prioritizes hands-on learning, guest lectures, group activities, charrettes, presentations as teams and individuals, and critiques.

(Charrettes are hands-on, rapid group explorations of a particular topic. They are solution-oriented, dynamic, and short investigations that result in potential solutions.)

Fellows are required to identify an individual project relevant to their organization or profession, to be completed over the course of the program, through which they’ll apply the principles, frameworks, and techniques presented.

In general, Fridays will be focused on new learning while Saturdays will be lab days, focused on charrettes and individual project work.

Each residency focuses on a central theme or topic and builds on ideas, concepts, and material presented in previous residencies. In between residencies, Fellows engage in online discussions of readings and previous lectures and work on team assignments and their individual projects. There will also be one or two webinars per month that feature outside experts.

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Leading by Design Fellows Program Curriculum


Delivery of books and reading list
Establish Fellows Learning Circles
Begin discussing individual projects
Introduction to online learning system

Residency 1: Envision and Inquire:

Sustainability: Systems Thinking Principles
Sustainability: Sustainable Strategy Model
Communications: Generative Communications
Communications: Visual Documentation/Practice
Design: Design and Innovation Process
Design: Design Thinking
Design: Design and Customer Research

Charrette 1

Residency 2: Design and Develop:

Sustainability: Sustainability Strategy
Sustainability: Business Tools
Design: Innovation and Experience Strategy
Strategy: Meaning Strategy
Leadership: Stakeholder Engagement

Fellows Presentations
Charrette 2

Residency 3: Deploy and Measure:

Sustainability: New Metrics
Communications: Collaboration & Team-building
Marketing: New approaches, Economics: Behavioral Economics
Economics: Ecological Economics
Leadership: Internal Championing

Fellows Presentations
Charrette 3

Residency 4: Envision and Inspire:

Strategy: Changing Internal Culture
Strategy: Creative Corporate Cultures
Strategy: Tools for planning and implementation
Strategy: Scenario Planning 1
Leadership: Entrepreneurship and Intrapreneurship for sustainable management
Leadership: Professional Development

Fellows Presentations (Projects and Prototypes)
Charrette 4

Residency 5: Model and Embed:

Strategy: Scenario Planning 2
Strategy: Competition and Cooperation
Strategy: New Business Models
Law: New Corporate Structures
Design: Shaping Resilient Organizations

Fellows Presentations (Projects & Prototypes)
Fellows Presentations (Scenario Plans)
Charrette 5

Reflection and Project Coaching (mid-September to mid-November)

Residency 6: Epilogue:

Final Presentations & Critiques
Strategy: Online Media Strategies
Public Forum
Final Charrette
Alumni and Community Resource Building

By the end of the program, Fellows will:

  • Gain the understanding and advanced skills to embed sustainability, design and systems-thinking principles into the design and management of business structures, processes, products, and services
  • Know front-wave techniques for customer and design research, branding and messaging, and innovation implementation
  • Enhance leadership skills to generate results, build excellence, and create meaningful value
  • Deepen critical reasoning ability to distill and prioritize needs and goals for better decision-making
  • Develop and hone entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial skills for innovation
  • Refine communication skills -- visual, written, oral -- for more effective management and engagement
  • Be better positioned as innovative leaders and change agents within their organizations and fields

Related Links
How to Apply
Leadership Council
Residency Calendar