Evolution House, Edinburgh College of Art (ECA), Scotland © SC Collective.

Ruth Kahn Lynford Lecture: Shashi Caan

February 11, 2015
6p Reception, 6:30p Lecture
Steinberg Auditorium

Shashi Caan, founding partner of SC Collective, will deliver the inaugural Ruth Kahn Lynford Lecture, titled Design Driven Change: WHAT NEXT?, as part of the Sam Fox School Public Lecture Series.

An internationally recognized thought leader for progressive design, Caan has spent her life immersed in the considerations of design and its impact on humanity, our society, and culture worldwide. With 30 years of design experience and leadership, she has simultaneously cultivated the three related aspects of design: practice, education, and the unification of the global design community. Constantly seeking to integrate her work and thinking within the realms of theory, application, and the resultant impacts of design, she continues to research and practice in her innovatively structured, international design firm, SC Collective.

Started in the United States in 2002, the award-winning firm expanded internationally in 2009, opening its first offices in the United Kingdom. With its unique structure and collaborative, research- and people-focused approach to supporting client and business success, the firm's portfolio reflects project diversity to include governmental, institutional, hospitality, and education typologies. With a hands-on approach to all projects, Caan has worked with such clients as Goldman Sachs, AON, Deloitte, Inver House Distillers, Dumfries and Galloway College, Edinburgh College of Art, and the University of Monterrey in Mexico. Her design projects have received industry accolades and notable design awards, including her recognition as Contract Magazine's National Designer of the Year in 2004.

With her community engagement, Caan continues to serve on numerous industry and professional boards and advisory councils. She was a two-term global President (2009-2014) and a Fellow of the International Federation of Interior Architects/Designers (IFI). She is a Fellow of the RSA (Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts, Manufactures and Commerce) and Design Ambassador to the Japan Institute of Design Promotion (JDP). In 2013, she was named Global Advisor to the annual Shanghai Design Festival and named an Honorary Fellow of the Design Institute of Australia (DIA). In 2014, she was bestowed Honorary Fellowships by the British Institute of Design (BIID) and the American Society of Interior Design (ASID) in the United States. She is regularly invited as a public speaker, international design juror, and panelist. Along with her several hundred articles and written contributions, she is the author of the seminal book "Rethinking Design and Interiors: Human Beings in the Built Environment," which has been translated into multiple languages.

As an educator, Caan has developed an equally strong career as an academic and visiting professor/lecturer. During her tenure as chair of the interiors program at Parsons The New School for Design (2002-2007), she celebrated the program's 100th anniversary with the rethinking of the representation for the interiors discipline, a project that continues to be touted as groundbreaking. For this she was named the 2006 Educator of Year by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA). In 2013 she served as the Otis College DONGHIA Designer in Residence. She continues to bridge education and practice by consistently challenging the status quo. Caan holds two master's degrees (in architecture and industrial design) from New York's Pratt Institute, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree (with honors) from the Edinburgh University in Scotland. In 2010 she was granted an Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts Degree from the New York School of Interior Design.