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The Global Collective

Organization / Institution:               The Global Collective

Role:                                           Strategy Team Lead

Collaborators:                               25 member team

Location:                                      Berlin + New York 


The Global Collective is a participatory community that represents a collaboration between skilled workers in distressed communities and young creatives who are looking for a platform to implement their ideas. 

Founded in 2017 by Raz Godelnik, The Global Collective is now a 25 member strong volunteer organization based out of both Berlin and New York.


Growth Strategy

Business Model Development

Brand Strategy

Marketing Campaign Strategy

Funding Strategy



Key Contribution

Ideation Workshops 

Concept Development

Growth Strategy 

Engagement Strategy



The idea behind The Global Collective germinated at a two-week course on on innovative business models hosted at the ReDI School under the direction of Raz Godelnik, an Assistant Professor of Strategic Design and Management at Parsons School of Design — The New School. 

The ReDI School is a school for refugee newcomers in Berlin that was founded in 2015, and supported by the Norwegian Refugee Council. 

Once back at The New School, efforts were made to initiate a co-design effort to a build sustainable business venture run by a refugee group in Berlin.


The Challenge

" As responsible designers in the emerging creative economy, how might we use our skills and resources to facilitate the empowerment of skilled workers in distressed communities? " 

The Challenge

Our Approach 

Given the sheer complexity of the issue, limited ground access and broken communication channels, the group adopted a agile mindset to work towards a viable business direction. 

Based on the learnings from numerous pivots, The Global Collective arrived at a flexible engagement model that is designed to accommodate the on-ground complexities.  

Our Approach

Our Engagement Model 

Our engagement model is influenced by techniques and methodologies used for building capacity, thinking through human centered design principles, developing a sustainable business model and building lean startup .

Our Engagement Model
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Behaviours + Culture


Building Capacity

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Skills and desires of community members are mapped along with constraints and possibilities.

A minimum viable business solution is co-designed based on these findings.





Community members and TGC members

co-ideate using participative facilitation methods.

TGC members convert ideas into design concepts.

Community members rank and select the final idea through an opportunity map.



TGC members prototype a low fidelity product for user testing.

 A suitable business model is designed.

Build a MVP.


Determine assumptions that need to be tested.

Design, build and run the experiment.

Measure and analyze results.

Continue, improvise or pivot.

Capacity Building Example; Design Facilitation for The Hope Campaign

The Hope Campaign, is an ongoing project that aims to set up a fashion accessories business for a group of 5 women entrepreneurs

who have sought refuge in Berlin. 

The project will help launch a line of tote bags that aims to connects refugees with locals in Berlin through storytelling. 

Currently our volunteer members in Berlin are engaged in a bi-weekly design facilitation workshop.

The Hope Campaign
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