Who We Are
We are a studio for impact creators and innovators. Launched within the Business+Impact Initiative in 2019, our mission is to bring impactful ideas to life using business and design tools along with research expertise from our university community.
Our team’s unique blend of expertise powers this work, with experience in design innovation and behavioral science, social entrepreneurship, social work, tech, and higher education, along with digital design and technical skills.
We are excited to share our experience designing for impact with others seeking to create positive change on our Medium Journal! Student-written posts featuring insights, learnings and news keep you informed about the latest coming out of the +Impact Studio.
Most Recent Posts:
Advancing My Social Impact and Racial Equity Work Through the +Impact Studio
Apr 08, 2021 / Read More
Public Tools for Empowerment: Designing for Trust and Transparency
With news stories regularly appearing about increased lead levels or PFAS in drinking water systems, residents are more attuned to these …
Feb 22, 2021 / Read More
PODCAST: Social Sector Tools – Futurist Thinking for Uncertain Times
In this episode of Social Impact Design for Business, Jeffrey Sanchez-Burks of Michigan Ross’ +Impact Studio interviews Jenn Holk, Strate…
Feb 19, 2021 / Read More
Impact Studio for Local Business
The +Impact Studio also collaborated with the Detroit Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Project (DNEP) of the UM Center on Finance, Law, & Policy and the Ford School of Public Policy to launch the Impact Studio for Local Business to help businesses in Southeast Michigan respond to and adapt to challenges caused by the pandemic. Led by Ross faculty Chris Mueller, 37 Ross and Ford school students worked in teams on solutions. These open source tools and guides are available here!
+Impact Studio Innovations
In the fall of 2020, the +Impact Studio Course worked to create a page to capture insights from the design thinking elements employed to focus on engaging with local businesses and nonprofits to tackle the challenges they face during the coronavirus pandemic. The +Impact Studio Innovations site will continue to be a resource for the collected learnings from the course and will ultimately drive visitors to all of the entrepreneurial ventures that spring from the course.
+Impact Studio Media:
- The Michigan Ross +Impact Studio Course Wins Aspen Award
- Poets & Quants lists +IS as an “Interesting MBA Course”
- Photo album from the +Impact Studio Grand Opening
- Article on the opening of the +Impact Studio
- Blog post by Winter ’20 course student Nan Sithinamsuwan
- Blog post about how BA670 inspired creativity in Winter ’20
We believe the strongest ideas are informed by research expertise combined with deep empathy. Our model activates the vast expertise and research insights from across campus to support the development and launch of powerful, impactful concepts. While we bring business tools and management principles to bear, we are agnostic to the vehicle solutions may take. We welcome for-profit, nonprofit, or open source models, policy briefs, etc.
Our work is inspired by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for a sustainable future free of poverty, hunger, and inequity. The Impact Studio course focuses on specific SDGs and themes. The studio is currently developing innovations that support small businesses and impact organizations in building back better, and reimagining their operations in light of the global pandemic. We are guided by principles of learning and co-creation across disciplines, sectors, and spaces, and core values of creativity, empathy, and equity.
Our model draws on the distinctive strengths of the University of Michigan: excellence across every scholarly domain, and a collaborative spirit and set of practices that enable teams to work seamlessly across boundaries to take on grand challenges. The studio aims to be an estuary connecting the academic world and the world of practice through design and business tools. Along the way, we hope to create a generation of architects able to work with communities to address pressing problems.