Interested in co-design and social innovation?

WHEN: August 11th at 6:15pm-8:40pm

Social innovation is inescapably intertwined with power, yet the important topic of power and how it operates in relationships between people is often overlooked.

Join us online (via Zoom) to hear about the practices of three esteemed Australian co-design practitioners, Morgan Lee Cataldo, Kelly Ann Mc Kercher, and Dana Shen and their reflections about the important topic of power and co-design.

Dana Shen

Often Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are seen as a problem to solve. Actually, First Nations communities, through culture, community and connection, through the trauma of colonisation and ongoing responses to system racism, have many lessons of survival and healing,- if people are willing to listen. Dana will discuss ways of being, knowing and doing that assist in deeper listening drawing from extensive experience in working with Aboriginal people, organisations and allies in creating positive systemic change.
About Dana
Dana is Aboriginal/Chinese and a descendant of the Ngarrindjeri people in South Australia and has a passion for working with Aboriginal people and communities. Dana has 20 years’ experience working across the public and not for profit sectors in the areas of health, families and child protection. Dana will be drawing from these experiences, systems thinking and being guided by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Morgan Lee Cataldo

Our social systems are in desperate need of redesign. More than ever before, community sector organisations recognise that there are stark power imbalances between them and the people who use their services. Morgan’s work seeks to address and minimise these imbalances by creating opportunities to meaningfully partner with communities who are most affected by polices and services that weren’t designed with them. As part of this Social Design Sydney event, Morgan will be reflecting on the role lived experience plays in creating and sustaining systems change, and the vital importance of interrogating power and intention as part of our practice.


About Morgan

Morgan Lee Cataldo brings over a decade of personal and professional expertise of collaborating with individuals, teams, and organisations to recognise the capability of people who experience systemic oppression. Drawing from her own lived experience as a core knowledge base, Morgan’s practice is centred around meaningfully partnering with people to reimagine service systems that prioritise care and dignity, and that value lived expertise as an equal form of wisdom. Morgan’s current work finds her as the Senior Manager Youth Engagement at Berry Street, one of Australia’s largest independent family service organisations. She also consults independently and in partnership with others, currently working with YLab Global on The Oasis Project as their Lived Experience Lead.

Kelly Ann McKercher

We can’t do co-design without seeing and addressing power differentials between individuals and groups. Power differences often prevent people from working together in meaningful ways, if at all. Kelly Ann (them/they) will share several frameworks for naming and sharing power from their new book Beyond Sticky Notes: Doing co-design for real. One framework helps designers to exercise power in partnership, and the other is a Model of Care for Co-design. The Model of Care, made up of ten components draws on a decades experience facilitating co-design, trauma-informed, strengths-based and recovery-orientated practice.

About Kelly Ann

Kelly Ann is a design practitioner, author and social researcher, originally from Aotearoa. Kelly Ann has worked in design-led social innovation for a decade, including as Principal of Participatory Design at The Australia Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI). Kelly Ann leads service design in Australia’s largest public pathology and forensic service, teaches design, and supports individuals and organisation to develop an ethical and inclusive design practice. Read more at:


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