Design is a powerful tool that can enable the elimination of many accessibility problems encountered on a large scale in our daily lives, from products to architectural structures and environmental arrangements, and to ensure social integration for all. On the other hand, poor designs cause accessibility problems and consequently barriers in the society.

On this page, we have prepared a guide "FOR NGOs" regarding the inclusive design studies to be carried out in collaboration with the University-NGO, and in accordance with the way our platform works. In this guide, NGOs working on accessibility problems can find the model we propose to increase the efficiency of the collaborations they will establish with universities to find solutions to these problems, the stages of the process and the guiding explanations about these stages. This guide is intended for NGOs, and separate documents have been prepared for universities and students who will be involved in the process, detailing the model from the educational perspective.


In summary, our model covers identifying "design briefs" that focus on real-life needs in NGO-University cooperation giving these design briefs to students as a task in their related course(s), and students’ cooperation with voluntary members from the relevant NGO throughout their design process. The cooperation process we propose adopts an “inclusive design” approach. Introductory information about the inclusive design is also included in our guide.

Our web-platform, which is an important component of our model that consists of 5 stages, provides the visibility of the developed student projects and the collaboration carried out with NGOs in the field of social responsibility. To develop this model, we adopted the concept design process developed by Cambridge EDC in their “Inclusive Design Toolkit”.

The stages of our collaboration approach are summarised below. You can find more detailed information and recommendations regarding its use in the design education, in the guidance document.

  • 1) MATCH: NGO or university representatives/educators examine the inclusive design and collaboration model we have developed on our web-platform. As a first step, a collaboration between a University and an NGO focusing on the common good is required. In this direction, NGOs and Universities that have previously participated in inclusive design studies and experienced our model or the other institutions that are open to cooperation are also listed on our web-platform.

  • 2) EXPLORE: Collaborative work between Universities and NGOs is important in determining the project subjects to be worked on within the scope of cooperation. While universities inform NGOs about course requirements and education process, NGOs convey their own experience on the possible problem areas to be focussed on. In this way, the resulting design briefs will both meet the course requirements and focus on real-life issues within society. Afterwards, these design briefs are uploaded to our web-platform and the University-NGO collaboration is made visible. The consensus on the confidentiality of the overall collaboration to be carried out must be ensured between the NGO and the University.

  • 3) CREATE: At this stage, tutors match design students with NGO members whom they will work together and carry-out a co-design process throughout the inclusive design project development process. Volunteer NGO members become “design partners” as they are involved from the very beginning to the end of the design process. Within this period, tutors and NGO representatives keep communication to ensure the collaboration proceeds in line with the common goal; and updates about the project work can be made on the project’s page on our web-platform, the link can be shared with other stakeholders to get their opinions and comment by the site visitors.

  • 4) EVALUATE: At the end of the project development stage, it is important to organise a “presentation day” for design students to present the co-design projects that they have developed with their NGO partners, and share their unique experiences. In this way, students can observe the experiences of other study groups that focussed on different design briefs. As a result, while the awareness of students about inclusive design increases, it will also be possible for NGOs to develop a new design-oriented knowledge area to deal with accessibility-related problems and communicate them with the society in a different way.

  • 5) PROMOTE: After the projects are completed, they can be uploaded to our web-platform as “completed projects”. The consensus on the confidentiality of project outputs and personal information should also be taken between the NGO and the University. The outcoming projects will help raise awareness of the problems that students focus on. NGOs can create a corporate profile by signing up to our web-platform, and if they wish, they can share information about their organizations under the "University / NGO" page. In this way, they will be visible for the development of new design-oriented collaborations.