design better, live better.

Cumple su “dulce sueño”

Jueves, 13 de junio de 2013, Diario de Yucatán. El presidente de la empresa Cab Balam, SPR, profesor Abelardo Balam Chi, de la comisaría meridana de Xcucul, recibió de manos de Cristina Acevedo Hernández, coordinadora de inocuidad alimentaria de la Fundación México-Estados Unidos para la Ciencia, su certificación de exportación que expide el Servicio Nacional para la Sanidad, Inocuidad y Calidad Agroalimentaria...
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Obtienen certificación para exportar

Después de 40 años de trabajo, la empresa Cab Balam, conformada por 10 socios apicultores y acopiadores, logró obtener la certificación sanitaria y de inocuidad para exportar miel bajo la marca “Yuca miel”.
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The Birds and the Bees and the GMOs

Honey produced by thousands of Mexican beekeepers is at serious risk of contamination from genetically modified soybeans. Producers have called for a new model of social production.
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Gualberto Cazanova

Innovations in International Development

On Thursday I made a brief presentation on the work of D4D at the UF Innovations in International Development Symposium. What always impresses me is the range of work being done at UF—well beyond what I see on a daily basis. These are colleagues working all over the world who have amazing contributions to make.
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Muse Interview

From an interview with Bennett Brzycki, Marketing Intern at the UF College of Fine Arts as a follow up on the Humans and Neighbors series for Muse Magazine. “One of the most immediate considerations is that to practice graphic design requires an understanding of culture, and this includes global culture. Of course for a long time we have understood there is value in internationalizing our curriculum at UF. What...
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Kanan Honey Update

In the summer of 2012 we began working on a new project with Cooperativa Lol-Balché and several other honey cooperatives. This newly formed organization, KANAN HONEY, is one of five established honey cooperatives (60+ beekeepers) in the state of Yucatán, México and interdisciplinary experts led by the Mexico-United States Foundation for the Sciences (FUMEC) to bring KANAN’s world-class Mayan honey direct to the...
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Lol-Balché Fieldwork Observations

When working on the honey project, our partner Manuel Magaña made a point to tell me that he was both impressed and surprised that the UF students were so interested and wanted to learn. He anticipated fear of entering the apiary but soon saw how seriously students took the project and how they wanted to learn about their process.
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Lessons Learned: 12 thoughts on working with communities

In 2008 I drafted 12 thoughts on working with communities, lessons learned from collaborative design projects in partnership with indigenous communities in Yucatán and Jalisco (México).
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kanan honey survey

Please take this survey. It is for our work with Maya Honey cooperatives in MX. Please take a moment to look over the survey and give us feedback on the designs. It is for a good cause and we need your help, feel free to send this survey link to friends. It is moving forward fast – our deadline is July 1st at noon. Find the survey here.
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kanan honey / miel kanan

This summer we’re working on a project with Fundación Mexico-Estados Unidos para la Ciencia (FUMEC) to develop a union of local honey cooperatives so they can market their honey in México and the US. This project is informed by our earlier project with Lol-Balché in Santa Elena, Yucatán.
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Kuxtal Sian Ka'an

Ak Kuxtal Sian Ka’an

“Ak Kuxtal Sian Ka’an,” (Kuxtal—Maya—that which gives us life; pronounced kush-tol), is a network of artisans established to counter the systemically low value, low wages, and low expectations of and by artisans and simultaneously promote environmental stewardship by fostering an economically, culturally, socially, and environmentally sustainable craft industry.
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change is beautiful

An interview with Marcos Canté Canul, President of Cooperativa Xyaat in Señor, QR, México on working with D4D.
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creativity workshop

We conducted this workshop with artisans in Noh-Bec, Quintana Roo, working with Ak Kuxtal Sian Ka’an.  
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lol-balché honey

We began to work with Cooperativa Lol-Balché, a 41-member cooperative in Santa Elena, Yucatán in late 2006. In addition to selling wholesale, some members wanted to bring a percentage of their honey direct to market. This decision came at a pivotal stage in their growth and development with the completion of their state of the art honey processing plant. The objective of this direct-to-market project is to...
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graciana_medicine

women artisans: tihosuco

Maya Handicrafts (Tihosuco, Quintana Roo, Mexico). The purpose of this project was to create a cohesive identity to help members increase consumer confidence in their offered products. At the same time, it was an opportunity to work with women to aid in developing their business strategy and market positioning.
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social capital & social business: the new definitions

by Social Edge Muhammad Yunusin his book “Creating a world without poverty” defines two possible kinds of Social Business: Companies that focus on providing a social benefit rather than on maximizing profit; and Profit-maximizing businesses that are owned by the poor or disadvantaged.
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chichén itzá master plan for 2012

Plugging Yucatán into the Tourism Circuit: If Governor Ivonne Ortega Pacheco has her way, the State of Yucatan will become a series of interlocking circuits of activities for any tourist on any budget, according to a new master plan announced a few weeks ago.
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na bolom chair, san cristobal

San Cristobal, Chiapas, México. Download the templates to build this chair made with no hardware and just two pieces of wood – true to the original at the Na Bolom Research Center. Make it. Make it better. Silla Na Bolom y Patron Na Bolom Seat and Pattern
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organic farming in noh-bec

Narayan Ghiotti and I met with Gualberto Cazanova in Noh-Bec, Quintana Roo to talk about the next phase of the “pixan” project. Narayan will be working with Gualberto in the field (literally) and it will be an opportunity for learning and exchange. I’m very pleased with this connection and happy to see this greeted with so much enthusiasm.
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Mint in Mexico: Not your usual spring break

— Maria Rogal, 2007. Published in Muse, the news magazine of the College of Fine Arts at the University of Florida.  During spring break 2007, five students* in the graphic design student-run studio “Mint” flew into Cancún with their instructor, Doug Barrett, for a seven-day trip. This wasn’t the usual spring break in México. Their purpose was to join me in southern Mexico and visit two cooperatives that Mint...
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thick descriptions

The term was used by the anthropologist Clifford Geertz in his The Interpretation of Cultures (1973) to describe his own method of doing ethnography (Geertz 1973:5-6, 9-10). Since then, the term and the methodology it represents have gained currency in the social sciences and beyond. Today, “thick description” is used in a variety of fields, including the type of literary criticism known as New...
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