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RSD12 Concept—2023

by | Feb 2023 | SDA blog

Although the programme might look complicated, it is quite simple. You simply register for the in-person hub(s) you are interested in and RSD12-ONLINE. You can dip in and out of online sessions, following the path that most interests you over 15 days from October 6 to October 20. If one of the hubs has a focus or region that fits with your work you can go deeper and connect with others in person.

The idea for RSD12 was sparked by our intention is to increase locality and support accessibility and conviviality while reducing our carbon footprint and travel expenses. The model also lowers the barrier to offering a systemic design gathering by centralizing communications support and providing an online platform for broadcast sessions. It is also hoped that co-creating RSD12 across a network of hubs will increase connections and knowledge transfer.

With a nod to numerological synchronicity, RSD12 seemed to organise itself into twelve hubs without any conscious attempt on our part to bring this about. The structure emerged as RSD12-ONLINE, the culminating symposium by the RSD12 host Georgetown University, RSD12-WASHINGTON, chaired by Evan Barba, and 12 incredible locally-generated symposia identified by locale—Ahmedabad, Amsterdam, Bogotá, Kihcihkaw-Âski,  Kingston upon Thames, Loughborough, Monterrey, Nordmark Forest, Pittsburgh, Toronto, Turin, and Vancouver

how it works

  1. Choose the in-person hub(s) you want to attend and register for them.
  2. Register for RSD12-ONLINE to participate in sessions across the entire online programme consisting of 100+ papers and 20+ workshops, plus daily livestreams from hubs featuring keynote speakers, plenaries and panels, and interactives.

All of the RSD12 sessions are organised and contributed by volunteers. Some are supported by their organisation, and some are self-funded. None of the initiatives have a commercial intent for profit.  The fees range from free to ~100 USD per day charged for cost-recovery on food and overheads.

Organisers provide a variety of concessions to reduce barriers, including early-bird and self-funded rates and no-charge tickets for those who cannot pay or access payment systems on request. This is done at the discretion of each organiser.

If you have any questions about fees or concessions please reach out the to contact person listed with the affiliated event or

RSD11 hub concept

The Georgetown proposal is a multi-event symposia concept, connecting systemic design hubs around the world in a sequence of in-person, online, and hybrid sessions. Hub symposia are augmented by a daily four-hour online program dedicated to full papers. The 24-hour, 15-day online programme also features presentations, online workshops, and sessions livestreamed from 13 hubs worldwide consisting of livestreamed keynote speakers, panels, and interactives. RSD12 culminates with a three-day event, October 18–20, 2023, hosted on-campus at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and the SDA General Assembly on Friday, October 20, 2023.

The main features of the RSD12 model are as follows.

  • The overall programme is mostly made up of sequential hubs and online events to avoid an overlap in programming.
  • The multi-site program is structured around a 24-hour timetable, so hubs can program onsite and hybrid sessions according to their local timezone.
  • The paper talks run weekdays at UTC 12:00–15:00 on the RSD12 event platform provided by Georgetown University.
  • The online programme comprises paper talks (peer-reviewed papers), keynote speakers, and space for emergent programming.
  • The online platform is co-scheduled and co-facilitated, featuring the common track and sessions the hub would like to broadcast.
  • The online event is managed by Georgetown University, including technology and registration.
  • Hubs manage their onsite event, including programming, registration, and collecting fees.


Organising Committee

Evan Barba, Associate Professor, Georgetown University, 

Palak Dudani, Designer Researcher,

Cheryl May, Editor,,

SDA Board Working Group

Silvia Barbero, Marie Davidová, Peter Jones, Ryan Murphy


Final submissions are due on
April 30

Open call for Reviewers
April 1–30

Feedback to authors
June 30

sessions OCTOBER 16–18

RSD13-OSLO & Nordmarka Forest October 22–26

Lidar-derived image of the Danube River and floodplain near Tulln, Austria. Daniel Coe. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 DEED

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