William Harald-Wong
Principal and Design Director
William Harald-Wong & Associates

William is an urban identity designer based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He consults on the shaping of distinctive Asian identities and physical living environments for new Asian cities, integrated urban mixed-use developments as well as for public and retail spaces in Malaysia and Vietnam. He also heads Moment Font Studio which focuses on intercultural visual research and documentation. William is a frequent traveling lecturer on design and culture of Southeast Asia. His work has been widely exhibited and published.

William is the founder of The Design Alliance Asia, a collaborative network of Asian design consultancies, with associates in Mainland China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Lebanon/Middle East, Malaysia, Philippines Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

Russell Kerr
Program Director - Honors Design at The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT University)

Russell Kerr is an Activist and Educator based in Melbourne, Australia.  Currently he is the Program Director of Honours Design in the School of Media and Communication at RMIT University, and the research leader for the Advocacy Lab, an interdisciplinary research laboratory in the School of Media and Communications honours program. His current PhD research investigates the contested field of Social Design specifically focusing on how social practice relates to Communication Design. The research examines the fields of sustainability, ethics, human-centered design and values-based design exploring how social relations in Communication Design practice are made explicit. Russell is a founding member of the Design for Community participatory design movement.

Ashwini Deshpande
Founder Director of Elephant Strategy + Design

Practice Head – Communication Design

After graduating from NID, Ashwini became a founding partner of Elephant Strategy + Design, India’s largest independent design consultancy. Her current priority is professional consultancy to help products & services become relevant in the emerging markets. Ashwini divides her time between facilitating management students learn design thinking, pro bono work for NGOs in heritage & nutrition sectors and professional consultancy to help products & services become relevant in the emerging markets; later being her priority at the moment.

Nanci Takeyama & Design For
Assistant Professor at School of Art Design and Media (NTU)
Co-Founder of 'Design For'


Dr. Nanci Takeyama has been Assistant Professor at Nanyang Technological University since 2008. Graduated as architect from Sao Paulo University, she holds a PhD in Design Research Theory from Kobe Design University. Her design works have been published in Design Discovery, Kyoto Journal, Japan Typography Association Magazine, Japan Typography Association Annual and Graphics Saijiki. Nanci is the founding director of ‘Design for’, a not for profit design platform working with ethnographic research leading to design for community development in countries like Vietnam and Laos.


Bernard J. Canniffe
Chair of Design Program at Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD)
Co-Founder of PIECE Studio


Bernard is the Chair of the Design Department at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD). He co-founded PIECE STUDIO in 2008–a collaborative, multidisciplinary social design studio, and is an advisor to the social collaborative group Project M.

He is the recipient of the Graphis: Inspiring Designers for the New Millennium Award, 2000, the Baltimore Step 10 Most Influential Designers Award, and The Joseph Binder Award, 2010. Mr. Canniffe’s work has been published in Graphis, HOW, STEP, Metropolis, GOOD, PRINT, Concept-Indonesia, Design-South Korea and CCPH Perspectives.

Kelley Cheng (Singapore)
Founder And Creative Director
The Press Room

Three times SOPA (Society of Publishers Asia) Award winning Editor and Creative Director, Kelley Cheng has carved a name in the specialized area of book-making and magazine creating. With 12 years of experience in the publishing industry, Kelley started her own publishing firm at 27 and founded the multiple award-winning design magazine ish, which successfully ran for a decade until 2009. She was recently appointed as the Editor-in-Chief for the 40-year old architectural journal, Singapore Architect, published by the Singapore Institute of Architects. She has served eight years as the Editorial & Creative Director of the reputed art & design publisher Page One Publishing.

2009 sees the birth of her new venture – a publishing and design consultancy The Press Room, which dabbles in all areas of design from publishing, graphic, brand, environmental, info-graphics, interior to theatre lighting and set design.