The Designing for Social Innovation and Leadership Course
The DSIL Course is a globally certified short course designed for busy professionals across sectors who are eager to expand their leadership skills while learning emerging practices. Our experiential curriculum consists of 10-day Field Immersions in Southeast Asia followed by live Virtual Classroom sessions led by global thought leaders and practitioners.
During the course, you will find yourself building a greater capacity to think openly and critically, communicate purposefully, and execute ideas within highly diverse organizations. You will evolve personally in your leadership too, after working one-on-one with executive coaches to break through the barriers that have held you back professionally while connecting with inspiring individuals from around the world.
Join our ecosystem of courageous individuals, thriving social enterprises, and progressive for-profit companies solving complex problems in imaginative and effective ways. After the course bring all that you have absorbed back into your companies and communities to ignite positive impact by fostering an organizational culture that enhances creativity and innovation.
The DSIL Course Curriculum
Develop strong mindsets and transferable skill sets.
The DSIL Short Course has 5 Components
+ 10 Day Field Immersions
2017 Field Immersions Offered in Thailand and Cambodia
The Field Immersions are built to accelerate capacity in innovative practices. We use design thinking, or complex problem-solving methods, that can be used both professionally and personally. The immersions are created in collaboration with local communities and filled with workshops and design sprints to solve real challenges that social enterprises face. We work in highly diverse teams alongside partners from academia, grassroots movements, social enterprises, and entrepreneurial ecosystems. Participants will learn to factor in cultural contexts and scaling challenges that need to be considered for an effective design process. While in Southeast Asia, the experienced DSIL team will coach you to lean into your individual learning edges and practice creativity while exposing you to a myriad of innovative projects and organizations all in an effort to help you understand what it means to create social impact. You will not find anything like a traditional academic environment on the DSIL Course. We are all teachers and students in the immersions and we learn by questioning, reflecting, and experimenting at every turn.
+ Virtual Classroom
Live Sessions Available Worldwide
The Virtual Classroom is comprised of a series of live, online sessions with thought leaders from around the world who are evolving the discussion and experimentation around novel practices at the exciting intersection of business and social change. The sessions offer depth and interactive dialogue with practitioners on layered problems, emerging practices, and brave provocations. Every year, the DSIL team brings on speakers that are pushing the edges of their fields to offer wide perspectives in the classroom.
+ DSIL Challenges
We learn by 'doing' and 'doing with' others
At DSIL, we center are anchored by two things: experiential learning (doing) and learning alongside others (doing with). During the Virtual Classroom and the DSIL Immersions you will be asked to complete a number of hands-on challenges that will facilitate meaningful and heightened self-awareness while practicing different design methodologies in your local context. The DSIL Challenges also offer effective leaderships practices to try in your own company or community. What happens as a result? You will feel increased confidence with your sharpened skills and tools by the end of the course that you will be able to shape them to fit into your life, work, and geographical context.
+ Building Your Network
The best part of the course are the others around you
Every year the DSIL evaluations strongly confirm that one of the most valuable assets to the course is the people that you will travel, experiment, and learn beside. DSIL participants are selected for their ability to show bias towards action, radical openness, critical thinking, and a readiness for upward growth. Collectively, we encourage the practice of authenticity to ensure the creation of a highly generative and collaborative community that you will be able to re-create again in any situation after experiencing all the components your group engaged with to make it possible. Throughout the Course you'll have access to peer mentorship and Executive Coaching from our certified team. Through doing, dialogue, discussions, and storytelling you will find other participants, the DSIL team, speakers and organizations you meet along the way becoming a part of your long lasting #dsilstory.
= Ripple Effect
Apply What You've Learned and Teach it Forward
All of our facilitators teach in a 'train the trainer' format so that you take the sharpened skill sets forward to others in your companies and communities. Upon completion of the Virtual Classroom and/or Field Immersion, plus conquering the DSIL Challenges, you will receive the Executive Certificate in 'Practices of Designing Thinking, Innovation and Leadership' from the Centre for Executive Education at the United Nations University for Peace. Our alumni have proven that the course was a launchpad that pushed them towards a new level of awareness and action- generating positive ripples in their lives and in the lives of others. See our full Impact Report to learn more!
Take a Look
Watch the DSIL Alumni tell their own #DSILstory
Sawako | Japan
A College Professor and Local Activist
Sawako came to learn about innovative solutions in the grassroots.
Christopher | Austria
An Entrepreneur and Creative
Chris came to learn about the practice and theory of design thinking.
Mansi | India
An Intrapreneur and Problem Solver
Mansi came to learn about authentic communication and leadership.
Alumni speak for themselves!
100+ DSIL Course Alumni from over 45 countries and counting!
"I feel empowered to use design thinking, not only as a framework but as a perspective or lens I can use day to day. I truly think I approach challenges and problems differently as a result of my experience at DSIL Course, and see opportunities where I normally wouldn't. I've learned about the importance of trusting the process and that ambiguity leads to innovation. I've felt personally fulfilled by meeting so many like-minded, curious, passionate people who are also dedicated to creating a kinder and better world."
"My job sent me to learn about innovation and I had no idea the level that it would change the way I understood my own leadership as well. I went back to work on fire and that has been contagious for my teams."
"This was the place I started my business. I had the idea and the Course and all it's tools helped me think through it and bring it into a tangible living thing that has helped me create a income and impact."
"My daily schedule has changed, my lifestyle has changed. The different lens I was exposed to made a major impact on me and the way I see and interact with the world."
Academic Partners and Collaborators
The DSIL Course is delivered in academic partnership with the CEE and dozens of inspiring organizations, companies, and individuals spanning the globe.
Centre for Executive Education (CEE),
UN Mandated University for Peace
SEE THE OFFICIAL CEE WEBSITE
The United Nations Mandated University for Peace (UPEACE), based in El Rodeo, Costa Rica, was created by the General Assembly of the United Nations to provide an educational framework to ensure a secure and equitable world for humanity and future generations. See the DSIL Course featured in their Annual Report.
'Why the Next Generation of Designers Will Save the World'
The WHY for Starting DSIL Course by Course Founder Courtney Lawrence
Volume 25, Issue 2, pages 42–46, Summer 2014