SVA MA Design Research

SVA MA Design Research, Writing & Criticism1 is a one-year graduate program2
devoted to the study of design, its contexts & consequences.
Our graduates have gone on to pursue research-related careers in publishing, education, museums, institutes, design practice, entrepreneurship, & more.3

  1. Formerly known as D-Crit
  2. About the program
  3. Applications accepted on a rolling basis. All successful candidates awarded a significant scholarship!
SVA MA Design Research

136 W 21st St, 2nd Floor

New York, NY 10011





(212) 592-2228

Nathan Adkisson, “Make Me Care!” – SVA MA Design Research

Nathan Adkisson, “Make Me Care!”

Many of our most valued cultural institutions are fighting a critical battle for people’s time and attention. Now that the public has access to nearly everything ever written with their phones, and companies can use reams of personal data to display hyper-targeted advertising, how can museums compete? Nathan will explore ways that experiences in public spaces can attract, surprise, and change audiences, discussing recent work, such as the new Legacy Museum spearheaded by the Equal Justice Initiative.


Nathan Adkisson is the Director of Strategy and Associate Creative Director at Local Projects. His clients include numerous cultural institutions such as the Cleveland Museum of Art, the American Museum of Natural History and ARoS Art Museum in Aarhus, Denmark. He launched Target Open House, a permanent concept store for the Internet of Things in downtown San Francisco. Currently, he is developing Planet Word, a 50,000 square foot museum of words and language opening in 2019 in Washington, D.C. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Museum Computer Network and is visiting faculty at Pratt Institute and the School of Visual Arts.

Before joining Local Projects, Nathan was a senior strategist at renowned digital agency Big Spaceship where he led projects for Crayola, Chobani, Belvedere, Google, Samsung, Sonos, Purina, AOL, and Fiji water. He is a graduate of Northwestern University and began his career as a journalist, holding reporter positions for the Austin American-Statesman and Moneymagazine.