While Studying At
Parsons School of Design


Independent Research Project with a non-profit organization based in NYC 

Team Credit

Maria Alvarez Roldan, Pankhuri Kanwar & Savani Mirashi


  • Design Research

  • Service Design

  • Design Thinking

  • Print Design

Location & Year

New York, 2016


Through this project, we show a methodology on how to embed a new design thinking method into a nonprofit organization that will enable a new way of collaboration, insight, and learning to improve the quality of decision making, the allocation of resources to create better opportunities, and the formation of a more consistent stream of value creation.

Our white paper goes through our entire thought process of creating a platform that will help build a community of people that are knowledgeable about parent-child relationships. It is targetted towards parents in New York City who wish to talk to their teenagers about sex and reproductive health but do not know how to approach the topic.


The network will elevate the overall quality of interactions and eventually result in bridging the communication gap between them.


To dig deeper into the customer segment of the organization, we decided to analyze the youth as well as the parents to understand where the opportunity was. We conducted a research on how the non-profit organization can project themselves as a brand that focuses on providing their customers with knowledge that promotes pre-natal care, adoption or abortion in contrast to its currently perceived image of being pro-abortion.


We decided to proceed in the process with conducting primary research. We used the technique of interviewing the users, where we prepared a questionnaire that would guide us to gather relevant information. This research method helped us understand our target audience better in terms of their needs, hopes, values and problems. 


Collecting insights on how the client’s service was perceived compared to their competitors helped us determine the direction we needed to take to improve and grow the client’s business.


Besides the information we gathered in our surveys, we did a co-creation workshop with our stakeholders and peers. This workshop was conducted at Parsons - The New School where 25 students, 2 Parsons lecturers, and 6 stakeholders from the non profit organization participated. The aim of this workshop was to create new approaches for products, services and business models by brainstorming with other students as well as members of the organization. This resulted in more creative ideas that helped us to narrow down the focus area. 


After extensive research, we identified an untapped consumer segment by proposing a crowd-sourced platform which will also be an additional revenue stream for the organization. The network will elevate the overall quality of interactions between parents and eventually result in bridging the communication gap between their children and them.