Kansas City Challenge 2019



The Future of Unknowns
A Victor Papanek Inspired Design Learning Challenge




A Welcome Message from KCAI
The Kansas City Art Institute is proud to host this timely Design Learning Challenge as an integral step toward launching our new Product Design Major

In this newest development of KCAI’s history of progressive design education, we recognize that today’s students strive to become makers; possess a powerful desire to use design to make a difference in the world. 

To that point, we are particularly excited to be collaborating with community members, disaster relief experts, higher education faculty and students, K12 teachers and students, and design professionals; bringing together a diverse group of creative minds to tackle The Future of Unknowns Challenge!



Building on the spirit and teachings of Victor Papanek, our new program aims to prepare young designers for our rapidly changing world – knowing that an increasing number of organizations are searching for designers who are prepared to solve difficult problems in creative ways. 

We seek to educate the whole individual; we believe that our graduates will make significant contributions to the civic life of the communities in which they live and beyond. The first cohort of freshman students begin their journey as agents of change in the fall of 2019.



The KCAI Product Design program leverages the Institute’s strengths in creative form-making while journeying into the design of products and systems that actively respond to global challenges. The program is distinguished by the innovative connectivity’s that are at its core; collaborations with all KCAI disciplines, industry professionals, business educators, pre-college students, alumni, and community leaders. 

Simply put, the program will prepare future designers to be agents for change through the objects and systems they create. 

Questions about KCAI's Product Design Major? 
Please contact Chris Chapin, Acting Chair, at chapin@kcai.edu




Questions? 
Contact Doris Wells-Papanek: doris@designlearning.us



The Future of Unknowns Challenge is facilitated by Doris Wells-Papanek, the founder and director of the Design Learning Network.