A little about me. 

A woman in front of a wall looking left
I currently describe myself as an In(ter)dependent designer and explorer of co-design practices. In the past years, I’ve been mostly experimenting with critical ways of doing design, in particular with a keen view to design processes and the worldviews they bring with them.

After studying product and graphic design at ESDI/UERJ, and working with graphic and interactive design for many years, I did my masters study at KISD, in Germany, with the theme “Designing for citizen-government interaction”. Those two years dedicated to my personal research in Germany were key to the moves I took next. Going back to Rio de Janeiro I decided to live in a slum, so I’d feel, experience and understand in depth what was the reality of living in these communities. I ended up living there for 8 years, and today I carry with me, in my little carrier bag (as Ursula Le Guin puts it), so many experiences and learnings that I can’t possibly share here in this site, but they have left profound marks in myself and my work. Some of it I’ve shared here and here.

During these past 10 years...

I’ve also done all sorts of consultancy work for multinational and Brazilian companies, as an Innovation Strategist and UX researcher. I’ve co-written a book about Gamification for enterprises (English and portuguese), with the experience my colleagues and I had acquired by creating behavior change strategies within companies. I was selected by the United Nations Alliance of Civilization to attend a very special summer school for young leaders in NYC, where I met committed young entrepreneurs from 75 different countries. I taught Design Research at one of the most prestigious design schools from Brazil (PUC-Rio). I’ve given dozens of talks and lectures sharing my work, from the Amazon to India. I've travelled a lot (Colombia, India, Egypt, US, Asia, Europe), and got to know many different realities and socially relevant projects. I became a mother of a now two year old, which has been a huge driver of studies and experimentations on learning processes. And I have done lots and lots of experimentations with peer-to-peer design, particularly but not exclusively within socioeconomically vulnerable communities, trying to bring the lenses of openness, co-creation, commons, systemic view of life, complexity thinking and regeneration. I’m a dweller in the countryside, where I’m seeking to create a more regenerative life for our communities.

This is a map of some projects I've worked on (not all of them are in this portfolio).
You can check the full map here.


Linkedin: https://br.linkedin.com/in/samaratanaka
Sometimes I post things in here: https://medium.com/@samarata