Designer... Dreamer... Doer
Kia Ora, Ni Hao & Hello!
My name is Jade Tang-Taylor.
I’m a Designer... a Dreamer... and a Doer.
( Ummm... What exactly does that mean? )
As a Designer: I was initially trained in graphic design, and started off my career as a digital / web designer. More recently, I've been practicing strategic design, human-centred design, co-design and social innovation. Moving forward I'm particularly interested in planet-centred design, regenerative, inclusive and participatory design. Also, exploring how technological futures can enable and accelerate design for social innovation, deliberative democracy and governance in the 21st century and beyond.
As a Dreamer: I’m a purpose-driven, design-led, somewhat idealistic and optimistic creative social entrepreneur. Always dreaming and endeavouring to connect cross-sector, cross-disciplinary, and cross-cultural communities to co-design and co-create new solutions and collective impact.
As a Doer: I’m someone who loves to make sh*t happen
(not too much hui / hui, more do-ey / do-ey ;))
A BIT ABOUT MY
My professional background is more of a squiggly line than a straight one... However, regardless of what "hat" I'm wearing, the central thread through them all is that I'm deeply passionate about ‘Design for Social Change’ as reflected in the myriad of projects, roles & experience below.
I was fortunate enough to receive an AUT Vice-Chancellor's scholarship, I was then able to study a Bachelor of Design (in 2005) and Masters of Arts Management (in 2010) where I focussed a lot of reading/research on creative and social entrepreneurship, and most recently embarked on a "Designing for Social Systems" masterclass at Stanford D.School.
I’ve immersed myself in professional life over the past decade and loved every minute of it! Over the next decade, I intend to shift my focus & energy in creating more long-term social impact and systems change. However, starting with my community, my family and my personal background.
A BIT ABOUT MY
My personal background is something I've learnt to embrace more of since our lil human was born.
I was born in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, my whakapapa /ancestry is from China, my whānau / family migrated to Aotearoa, New Zealand when I was two, where I'm lucky enough to find my turangawaewae / sense of belonging in Waitakere, West Auckland. Lived Experience of these Eastern traditions interwoven with Western mindsets has made me a proud “Chiwi” - someone of Malaysian/Chinese ethnicity and Kiwi/New Zealand nationality.
I also believe that growing up in a low socio-economic environment within a diverse community and venturing on various international travel experiences (Central America, North America, Asia, South East Asia, Europe & South Africa), I'm incredibly humbled by the different perspectives, world-views and approaches I've been lucky to have experienced which inform and influence who I am, and how I show up in the world today... Both personally & professionally.
Overall, I'm deeply passionate about: Design for Social Change / Systems Change, Design for Social Impact & Design for Social Innovation, with a personal focus on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging.
Currently, I'm curious about how we move from design thinking to systems thinking, how we shift our mindsets for social change to systems change, how we can co-create and co-design our future together, embracing technological futures & Web3.
However, I'm always learning, unlearning and re-learning... And I always love to connect with other like-minded people, hear about their stories, journeys & experiences and what inspired them to be where they are today and/or what they're doing today. If you would like to connect and catch-up over a cuppa, I would love to hear from you... So, feel free to please get in touch »
Ngā mihi, Xie Xie &
Thanks for stopping by!
" It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another."
- Nelson Mandela
I've been fortunate enough to have been involved in, co-founded, co-hosted and lead a wide range of projects & roles over the years. From local design initiatives, to global creative events and a few start-up social enteprises / side projects in between.
Interested in getting involved with any of my current projects, learning more about my previous projects, or have an idea for an upcoming project? Please get in touch »
Projects & Roles
The Mind Lab / Tech Futures Lab
Lead Innovation Director
The Mind Lab is redefining education and professional development by inspiring skilled, curious, lifelong learners.
Tech Futures Lab is the Graduate School for Human Impact: We help people and organisations navigate our fast-changing world, with innovative, future-focused education programmes.
I have recently been joined the whānau as Lead Innovation Director.
Iti Rearea Collective
Chair & Founding Member
Iti Rearea Collective exists to remove systemic barriers that keep migrant communities from reaching their full potential in Aotearoa New Zealand.
I am currently the chair and founding member of this collective impact & systems change initiative.
Innovation Unit is a social enterprise based in the UK, Australia and New Zealand.
We work internationally, applying disciplined approaches to develop new solutions and create impact at scale.
I have recently stepped down as Director and transition into a Associate role.
Edmund Hillary Fellowship
The Edmund Hillary Fellowship brings visionary entrepreneurs, investors and startup teams together in NZ to create global impact.
I am currently selected to be a EHF fellow as part of their final cohort 8.
SheEO is a radically generous community supporting women + non-binary people working on the World’s To-Do List.
I am currently a SheEO activator in Aotearoa, New Zealand.
CoJam is similar to a weekend hackathon, but with a focus on designing with the community.
Connecting with young changemakers, learn about creative problem-solving skills and collaborate with our former refugee & resettlement communities
I am currently one of the catalysts as part of the co-design colab.
Haere Mai & Welcome
'Haere Mai & Welcome' to Glen Eden is a creative initiative that provides new residents with all the information they need to find their feet in their new neighbourhood.
I am currently catalysing and co-designing this creative collaboration with the wider community.
Phoenix & Friends
Phoenix & Friends is a creative little family, based at the foothills of the Waitakere Ranges, West Auckland, New Zealand. And we spend quality time on community-minded passion projects.
I am currently one part of a family of three, and we are currently in the process of exploring creative collaborations in our local community.
Projects & Roles
Centre for Social Impact
The Centre for Social Impact is an initiative of Foundation North and helps grant-makers and funders invest for impact, and enables their community partners to turn that investment into inspiring and sustainable social change.
I was previously an associate of the Centre for Social Impact.
Ethnic Diversity Activator
Foundation North is holds in trust for the Auckland and Northland communities an endowment, or putea, of over a billion dollars.
I was previously the Ethnic Diversity Strategy Activator as part of the Leadership Team.
Cheese Cartel is a monthly subscription box of local artisan cheeses from across Aotearoa, NZ
I was previously one part of five fabulous socially conscious and entrepreneurial founders.
AUT | The Draft
Catalyst & Board Member
AUT | The Draft is a student-led agency for social impact.
This is a prototype that evolved out of a Strategic Design course I design, developed and delivered whilst I was lecturing at AUT. As well as a few follow-up design thinking workshop around staff and students.
Design Thinking &
Auckland University of Technology (AUT) is the fastest growing and second largest university in New Zealand.
I was previously part-time lecturing papers in the Faculty of Design and Creative Technologies (DCT) that are also available for Faculty of Business students:
- Design for Business
- Design Thinking/Co-Design
- Design Management
University of Auckland (CAI)
Creative Arts & Industries
Project Catalyst & Consultant
Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries (CAI), the University of Auckland's creative centre, the faculty promotes artistic and professional innovation and collaboration.
I was previously co-leading a design-thinking process to understand and prototype the Creative Ecology of Auckland/Aotearoa for CAI students, graduates and emerging creative professionals.
Chapter Founder & Co-Host
CreativeMornings is a global monthly breakfast lecture series for creative types.
I founded the Auckland Chapter in 2011 and currently in the process of officially handing over to my co-host Kaan Hiini, and setting up the advisory board.
On The Grid /AKL
Chapter Founder & Curator
On the Grid is a series of neighbourhood guides by local creatives. Created by Hyperakt and curated by amazing designers around the world.
In a recent social design research trip to Brooklyn, NYC I met up with the friendly guys at Hyperakt and have been appointed the Auckland ambassador and West Auckland curator.
100 Days /100 Mums Project
Co-Founder & Creative
The 100 Days Project is a simple creativity project that requires one thing, every day for 100 days.
During my maternity leave, I took the opportunity to adapt this concept to embark on a creative challenge to do 100 empathy interviews with 100 inspiring mums.
Curative NZ Ltd
Co-Founder & Director
Curative is a creative agency committed to making the world a little bit better.
Co-founded in 2012 along with Eddy Royal, I have recently resigned from my role as director to focus on other upcoming projects.
The Feast /AKL
Chapter Founder & Host
The Feast is about bringing together inspired people from across disciplines to connect, create, and celebrate social innovation and the power of human potential.
We hosted a satellite event 'Feast on Good' Worldwide Auckland Hub in collaboration with other changemakers.
The Big Idea
The Big Idea is an online community for creatives in NZ, all about valuing creativity and accelerating success.
I was the Community Manager in 2011, where I lived by the mantra "work on projects that inspire you with people you aspire to" and worked with an incredible team.
We Can Create
We Can Create is New Zealand’s alternative art and creative industries showcase.
I was the Marketing / Media liaison and worked closely with the Creative Director to help realise this event in its inaugural year in 2011.
Art Director & Connector
yMedia connects students, industry and not-for-profit organisations to develop and implement new media initiatives for collective growth.
Founded in 2008, I became involved in this youth driven social enterprise as Art Director & Connector and managed the yMedia Challenge in 2010.
Have an interesting idea?
If you have an upcoming project/interesting idea related to design/creative/social change you would like to discuss
and explore with me, don't hesitate to get in touch »
He aha te mea nui o te ao
What is the most important thing in the world?
He tangata, he tangata, he tangata
It is the people, it is the people, it is the people
– Māori Proverb
I love people and a self-confessed "networkaholic" and believe in both the strength of grassroots communities & leadership networks to connect, collaborate and create change for a better Aotearoa/New Zealand/ World.
Most of the membership networks I belong to relate to either design, diversity, creativity and women. Interested in joining any of these networks or connecting with one of these communities? Please get in touch »
Community & Networks
friend & contributor
NZ Asian Leaders network member
Super Diverse Women network member
Honestly speaking, I'm not much of a writer, however I do find myself from time to time, feeling compelled and passionate enough about a topic or issue that I'll cobble together some thoughts and share my opinion.
Fortunately, I've been lucky enough to have a few pieces written about me / my work too. Here's the most recent posts on my blog below, however if you're keen to read more, or follow me on Medium or view the full blog »