Jay Wall on How Graphic Design Can Narrow the Equity Gap – Next City

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Jay Wall on How Graphic Design Can Narrow the Equity Gap

December 11, 2019

“Design and communications can make complex topics approachable so that people can rally around solutions, and help to envision the future we are working to create together,” says Jay Wall, principal and creative director of RallyRally and presenter for “How Graphic Design Can Narrow the Equity Gap.”

In places where only a small portion of the population is responsible for how cities are designed, equity gaps are a looming issue.

As efforts are made to close this gap, city governments are expected to incorporate constituent input more frequently into the planning process. This empowers underrepresented groups to enact meaningful and impactful changes that represent their needs and desires, thus creating more equitable cities. 

Civic change often feels inaccessible to many, but making space for clear communication and outreach can be a bulldozer to that obstacle. 

“In this era of information overload, good visual communication has the potential to cut through the noise and open up channels to participation,” says Wall. “Thoughtful graphic design and jargon-free writing can reduce barriers for many people by presenting policies as relevant, explaining complex topics and offering calls to action.”

Wall and the RallyRally team actualized this style of inclusive community engagement while working on a transportation planning project alongside Dillon Consulting for Transit Windsor in Windsor, Ontario. By using visually engaging graphics and relevant messaging, RallyRally created a marketing campaign that encouraged the public to reimagine their city’s transit system.

Over the course of a month, more than 2,000 respondents (more than 1% of the city’s population) completed an online survey, while many others attended public meetings, and generated an unprecedented amount of feedback to shape Windsor’s new transit plan.

In this webinar, Wall dives deep into this case study and share insights on how communications can promote more inclusive public participation in civic processes

Jay Wall is the principal and creative director of RallyRally, a design studio dedicated to social change and creating better cities. Based in Toronto and working around the world, RallyRally amplifies the impact of forward-thinking organizations through creative strategy and graphic design. Jay was selected as a Next City Vanguard fellow in 2015.

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