Better World by Design is a student-led initiative at Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design that celebrates the interdisciplinary collaboration between designers, educators, innovators, and learners. We envision a world where design-thinking is accessible to everyone and aim to discuss, educate, and explore ways that design can center alternative narratives. Through our efforts, we hope to catalyze transformative change on local and global scales.

What We Do

During the year, we facilitate workshops, panels, and discussions that engage in and promote design. These events culminate in an annual two-day conference that brings together designers, curators, scientists, makers, academics and students from across the country to inspire further conversation.

Our Story

In 2008, Sharon Langevin (Brown ’09), Steve Daniels (Brown ’09), Tino Chow (RISD ’09) and Mike Eng (RISD ’09) founded Better World by Design to merge their fields and solve social problems from a holistic perspective. Over the years, Better World by Design has expanded its reach while fostering a close partnership between Brown, RISD, and the Providence community.

Team Members 2023



Jesse is a senior at Brown from Marlborough, Massachusetts technically concentrating in Architecture (built and urban environments intrigue him, but he prefers to say he is studying design). He is particularly passionate about designing, writing, and creating for social good, especially across digital space and time. When he's not deep in flow-state putting the finishing touches on a project, he's a big reader, a devoted connoisseur of caffeinated beverages, and a fierce advocate of the 'your mom' joke.


Ryan is Brown '25, concentrating in Design Engineering (hopefully) and Computer Science. He calls both Atlanta, GA and Memphis, TN home. As an engineer and designer, he's most concerned with directly improving our everyday lives through physical experiences by pairing new and existing technologies with appropriate and considerate design. In his free time, you can find him reading coffee table books, writing trivia, or analyzing flight fares.


Kayla Feng

Kayla is a senior studying Graphic Design at RISD. She lives at the boundary between dreams and reality. She incorporates her passion for research, world-building, existentialism, and surrealism through written and visual dreamscapes that explore the intimacy between humanity and the universe. Outside of design, you can find her playing with her cat Luna, reading, or fantasizing about living in a spaceship.

Maggie Xian

Maggie is a sophomore at RISD from Auckland, New Zealand. Intending to major in Graphic Design with a concentration in Computation, Technology, & Culture, she is particularly interested in exploring multidisciplinary modes of thinking and making. She harbours a passionate dislike for car-centric infrastructure and a very specific shade of fuchsia.

Jin Kim

Jin is a senior student in graphic design at RISD.  She is passionate to translate brand identity into visual language using motion, color, and line to make an enjoyable visual. 
Her ultimate goal is to make a memorable video by conveying a message to the audience with timeless designs.

Li June Choi

Li June Choi is a senior at RISD from Seoul, South Korea. Majoring in Graphic Design with a concentration in Computation, Technology, & Culture, she is passionate about Digital Design Tools and UI UX. She also delves into 3D modeling, in particular cute character designs. Her dream is to make a cute character like Hello Kitty that can make her a millionaire.


Henry Ding

Henry is a junior studying architecture at RISD. He hails from the land of the Great White North—Canada.  Henry is interested in the coalescence of architecture, politics, and language and is constantly striving for ways research and design for these spaces. Look for his bag if you're ever in need of spare X-Acto knives, cookies, Tylenol, Redbull, or semi-destroyed computer equipment. He's happy to provide!

Chaewon Bae

Meet Chaewon Bae from South Korea, a dynamic second-year student at Brown University and an unabashed cat lover and boba addict. Majoring in visual arts and computer science, she has a keen interest in UI/UX design, concept art, and animation. In her free time, you can find her practicing figure drawing and painting or miles deep into a youtube or Art Station rabbit hole.


Fuka is a sophomore from Japan, studying Design Engineering & Interactive Computing at Brown. Passionate about using design to create innovative solutions while considering ethical implications, she's always making new things. If she's not unresponsive to your texts, she's probably dancing around her dorm room, going on long walks with her camera, or planning vacations she'll never actually go on.


Govind is a sophomore at RISD from New Delhi, India. He has a passion for industrial design, with a particular focus on jewelry and wearable art. Inspired by the natural world, he loves incorporating organic forms into his work. In his free time, he enjoys reading, thrifting, and exploring new artistic mediums.


Tenzin is a junior studying Behavioral Decision Sciences and Human-Centered Design at Brown. She believes in the power of storytelling through ideation, play, and empathy, seeking to discover innovative ways of using technology for the social good. When she is not basking in the sun, you can find Tenzin reading historical fantasy novels, photographing random bits of her life, and cooking hearty meals with her friends- it is indeed her love language.



Hannah is a current junior studying Architecture as RISD with a strong interest in environmental design. She aspires to contribute to community spaces while emphasizing sustainable practices. Outside of the studio, you can find Hannah roaming around Providence attempting to be a local and searching for hidden gems in the city. During her quiet times, she loves to watch horror films and aims to cook like a Michelin chef.


Da-Young is a junior at Brown studying Mathematics-Computer Science, but who also has a love for ethical data science and inclusive human-centered design. She is particularly interested in improving the design of systems and processes at organizations and generally loves breaking things down into the sum of its parts in order to examine each part closely. Da-Young hails from Rockville, Maryland and brings her experiences from social entrepeneurship and community-participatory research spaces in Washington, D.C..



Fiona is a junior from New Jersey at Brown University hoping to pursue an independent concentration in Ethical Human-Centered Design with a focus UI/UX Design. She draws from her everyday sensations to design for the lived human experience, and is committed to protecting that experience by breaking down the nuances of optically and neurologically exploitative and manipulative uses of art and design in tech. If you happen to see her designing, chances are you’ll also see her sipping on the newest flavor of GT’s kombucha or snacking on an egg.


Naemi is a junior from Berlin, Germany concentrating in Environmental Sciences and Computational Urban Design at Brown. She is interested in circular water and energy systems in cities, as well as really anything related to sustainable design. On a free day, you can find her going on long walks, daydreaming in bed, and planning her next art museum visit.



Roy is a second year Dual Degree student studying Modern Culture and Media at Brown University and Furniture Design at RISD. He is interested in material exploration and sculptural creations. On his free time you can find him going on camping trips and cooking large hearty Korean meals.


Fern is a Junior from Bangkok, Thailand studying computer science and behavioral decision sciences at Brown. She is passionate about human-centered design in technology, and is interested in creating accessible, user-friendly digital experiences. In her free time, you can find her exploring new spaces on campus, rock climbing, or trying out new spicy menus (always open to new recs!).


Fiona is a class of 2026 student at RISD. She studies textiles with a passion in applying textiles to garment construction. She’s from San Diego, California. She loves having a crazy night out with friends, but she is also an indoor person who likes to just chill in her dorm working. She needs at least one cup of coffee per day.


Nicole is a junior pursuing industrial design at RISD. She plans to combine her background in visual communications with her current explorations in industrial design in order to foster positive, community-focused experiences through design. When she’s not in studio, you can find Nicole at the Providence Athenaeum, missing the warm weather back home in Miami, or forgetting where she just put her phone down. By the end of the year, she hopes to become a book-binding master and finally learn how to use Blender.


Christie is a senior studying Industrial Design at RISD, concentrating on Nature, Culture, and Sustainability. Raised in Southern California, Christie believes In-and-out hits the spot like no other burger can. In her free time, Christie loves cooking for her friends, exploring different restaurants, and making small jewelry.