17 June 2023
Facilitated by:
The Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts


This fold aims to spotlight educators and trainers who are spearheading curricular and informal education programs and are building communities through support spaces and training programs dedicated to empowering creatives and the next generation of designers to challenge their circumstances, make impactful business or take on leadership roles.  


The Value of Collaborative Spaces in Design

Creating collaborative environments within the design industry for informal training and learning is of utmost importance. Amani will provide her unique perspective and share her experiences on how to establish such environments, emphasizing their role in fostering the development of diverse and inclusive design solutions.
The talk will offer valuable insights into the significance of prioritizing conversations that involve active listening, empathy, and open-mindedness. Amani will emphasize how embracing these values can contribute to building a greater sense of understanding and respect within the design industry, ultimately promoting inclusivity and equality.

About Amani:

Amani Qaddoumi is a Brand Designer & Strategist with over 20 years of experience. She has worked with diverse clients across multiple industries and has collaborated with esteemed design firms and advertising agencies. Amani is a passionate advocate of knowledge-sharing and regularly participates in industry events. She is also the Founder & CEO of alb, an NFC smart wristband that connects users to cherished memories through a smartphone scan.


In the realm of design, encompassing start-ups, professionals, and emerging designers, a profound understanding of the principles of design thinking is crucial. Dr. Farah will delve into the transformative potential of design thinking during project initiation, emphasizing the significance of acquiring the proper steps to bridge the gap between a creative concept and a viable business model. Drawing upon expertise in academia, informal design teaching, sustainable design, and entrepreneurship, Dr. Farah will highlight the critical role of coaching design start-ups and designers throughout the journey from creative concept to a business model.The talk aims to illuminate the inherent value that design thinking adds to a concept, examining how design-thinking methodologies can effectively and sustainably organize start-up operations. By sharing real-world experiences and practical insights, participants will glean valuable lessons on harnessing design thinking as a tool to propel their ideas forward, foster innovation, and create sustainable, impactful designs.

About Farah:

Dr. Farah El Zein is a researcher and consultant currenly serving as Head of Department at the American University of Cyprus. She founded GreenShift for Upcycled Furniture in 2017 - an innovative green business concept, creating sustainable furniture and interior solutions, that have a positive impact at an ecological and social level.

 The Future in Heritage

Salma will emphasis the importance of implementing comprehensive, long-term programs that transmit heritage through design, craftsmanship, vocational training, and apprenticeships. These programs serve a dual purpose: sustaining our rich heritage and simultaneously opening new avenues in the realm of artisanal crafts and high-quality design.Furthermore, the session will explore the transformative potential of operating at a cultural level, where a thriving ecosystem emerges through harmonious collaboration among artisans, designers, craftsmen, and vocational enablers. This inclusive approach fosters a vibrant community that drives economic growth and cultural preservation.Overall, this session highlights the significance of preserving cultural identity in design and offers effective strategies to create sustainable economic opportunities while honoring the regional heritage.

About Salma:

Salma Al Qatawneh is a Jordanian interior architect and product designer, who is always keen to spread awareness on cultural heritage and traditional crafts through innovative integration of traditional techniques with contemporary aesthetics. Salma has been working at Turquoise Mountain since 2018, where she has expanded her knowledge of product design in the world of traditional crafts and worked on local and international projects with artisans.

Repositioning Sustainability in Design

Tilla will delve into the dynamic and evolving concepts of sustainability in design and discuss how to effectively incorporate them into alternative education. The talk will explore various aspects that influence these concepts, including the redesign of processes, the development of systems, and the incorporation of intercultural exchange. It will also shed light on the alternative roles that designers can play in the creative process.In addition, Tilla will present valuable lessons on the significance of adopting a cooperative system that encourages co-creation and collaboration among diverse stakeholders. The talk will emphasize the importance of integrating sustainability into design education and provide practical strategies for creating sustainable solutions.Overall, the session will underline the importance of promoting sustainability in design education and will offer practical insights and strategies to empower designers in creating sustainable and impactful solutions.

About Tilla:

Tilla Theiss is a communication designer who has been dealing with the topic of sustainable design, alternative design and design for the future for more than 12 years. In her teaching, Tilla uses creative approaches, comprehensive models and various design thinking practices to create fun and inspiring experiences for her participants. She recently founded N:VISION Workshops, a sustainable design learning platform.

The Right "to" Design 

Exploring the transformative potential of designing impactful and sustainable programs that inspire communities and designers, Sarah Rita will delve into the broader implications of her work, which lies at the intersection of academia, design training, and community engagement. Her talk will highlight the generation of economic opportunities that extend beyond the social sphere, showcasing the profound effects of prototyping comprehensive design proposals on employability, the environment, and economic growth.
The emphasis of the talk will be on the significance of integrating social context into education and workshops. Sarah Rita will emphasize how tailored training programs at a social level can create a robust ecosystem that involves designers, researchers, manual labor, and enablement in underserved communities. These programs make substantial contributions to the industry's economy, fostering a sense of empowerment and promoting sustainable development.

About Sarah Rita:

Sarah Rita Kattan is an architect with degrees from the American University of Beirut and Politecnico di Milano. Sarah Rita's professional experiences are related to innovative school rehabilitation, public spaces and community centers. She is engaged in community development of young people in formal and non-formal settings and has organized mentorship seminars as well as educational forums. She teaches, among other topics, design courses at multiple universities in Lebanon.

The Emerging Voices of Design

In her active efforts to address the need for creating learning opportunities for emerging designers in Iraq, Tuqa focuses on imparting technical design skills and practical knowledge to equip these designers for success. This talk will highlight the collective platforms that Tuqa has established to amplify their voices and showcase their work, further emphasizing her dedication to fostering their representation within the design community.Additionally, drawing on her personal experience of undergoing a career shift based on informal learning tracks, the speaker can provide valuable insights into the challenges faced by emerging designers and establish a relatable connection with their journey. Sharing specific examples of collaborative projects, exhibitions, or mentorship programs in which she has been involved would provide tangible evidence of her efforts in supporting and empowering emerging designers

About Tuqa:

Tuqa Rammahi is an Iraqi graphic designer based in Baghdad. She received her bachelor's degree in software engineering, and is specialized in Visual Identity design and brand development. Tuqa is the founder of Mubadarah and the co-founder of 4designers. In her ventures, Tuqa focuses on enhancing and highlighting the Iraqi design scene through establishing networks between designers and raise awareness for her local scene.

Panel Discussion:

Finding Synergies in Design Education 

With Imke Grimmer, Sarah Rita Kattan, Amani Qaddoumi and moderated by Dr. Ohoud Kamal

About Ohoud:

Ohoud Kamal is an urbanist. She received her PhD in urban planning at Newcastle University and a MArch in Urban Design from University College London. She is currently an assistant professor at the American University of Madaba and an urban planning consultant working on researching Ad-hoc and temporary urban spaces of Amman. She is the co-founder of a research group called SURGE.

Images: Emad Zyoud

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