Fri, Apr 7th, 8:00am - 5:00pm

AIGA Innovate: Call for Proposals

Applications are now being accepted for the 2017 AIGA Innovate grant.

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AIGA Innovate supports critical, relevant, and ground-breaking projects at AIGA chapters in communities across the country. This year, we’re seeking projects which reflect two of AIGA’s core values: leadership and impact. What does it mean to be truly innovative? We believe designers have a unique capacity to be agents of change. Together we, as the collective voice of design, have an extraordinary pool of talent to draw from as we look to the future and aim to continually optimize our membership engagement while offering leadership opportunities. As designers, our members solve the world’s problems all day, and so it stands to reason that these talented creatives are the perfect people to help shape AIGA’s future and relevance in the world. AIGA Innovate is a four-year long fund with up to $250,000 to be awarded each year. Established in 2015, it aims to support and empower members and chapters in a whole new way. We recognize that this program is an exchange platform through which we can learn about our membership, improve the sustainability and leadership challenges of our chapters, and the relationship of designers to their respective communities. Learn more about AIGA Innovate and collaborate with us to apply for funding.  


Download the application packet to ensure you have included all of the proposed Round 1 application information, here. Email your Round 1 application proposal content to be reviewed by the chapter board by Friday, April 7, 5:00 PM CST in order to be considered.

Submit now »


High standards for approval

We want your ideas to blow our minds, and like all grant applications, there are a few things to keep in mind. Proposed projects must:

  • Align with the mission and direction of AIGA.
  • Illustrate one or more of AIGA’s core values (design excellence, leadership, equity, and impact, with an emphasis on categories: leadership and social impact).
  • Be developed in collaboration with a chapter’s board of directors–a project cannot be submitted by an individual member without the endorsement of the board.
  • Meet a concrete, specific need in the community and identify a partner with whom you can develop this project, such as a nonprofit community association, a civic entity, a school, or expert resource.
  • Offer effective tools, resources, platforms, and strategies to facilitate active member participation and civic engagement at large.
  • Be innovative: provoke new thinking about the practice, education, or understanding of design, demonstrate inspiraiton, and model new ways to engage designers in their communities.
  • Your project must be executable and sustainable within proposed resources. Consider the need for the impact of your project to serve both the variety of constituencies of AIGA members and to encourage participation among underrepresented groups.

Who can apply?

  • All applications must be submitted with the approval and participation of your local AIGA chapter board and the signature of your chapter president. AIGA Innovate grants are awarded to chapters, not to individual members.
  • Any individual leading a project and submitting on behalf of their chapter must 1) be a current AIGA member and 2) develop the application in collaboration with their AIGA chapter

Note: AIGA Innovate grants are not a stipend for individual chapter activity or one-time special events. Instead, this fund should be considered an opportunity for additional means to prototype an exciting new project for the wider organization.   Learn more about the projects funded to get a better sense of what types of projects AIGA Innovate supports:

  • Projects funded in 2016EntreprenU: Design Business Toolkit, AIGA Baltimore; Design Legislation Map, AIGA Baltimore; Empowering the Underserved DesignKit, AIGA Arizona.
  • Projects funded in 2015, including two that were funded from our very own chapter.

Contact Leadership

Katrin Loss
Katrin Loss
A member of AIGA since 1999, Katrin served on many committees and in a variety of roles for the Minnesota chapter since 2002, including chairing the Luncheon Lectures series from 2003–2010 and volunteering on the Design Show committee since 2010. In 2007, she joined AIGA Minnesota’s board of directors as the Associate Director, Luncheons and, in 2011, was named “Volunteer of the Year.” Most recently, Katrin served as AIGA Minnesota’s Vice President for two years, including overseeing the Programming Council. Prior to that, she served as AIGA Minnesota’s Director of Operations for five years overseeing and improving systems and processes in support of AIGA Minnesota’s numerous and diverse programming needs and co-chaired the 2014 AIGA Minnesota Design Show.

An award-winning art director/designer with extensive experience in brand development, Katrin currently works in-house for Best Buy’s Brand Design team. Katrin is a graduate of Minneapolis College of Art and Design with a BFA in graphic design, and also holds a degree in business administration and international trade from Staatliche Handelsschule in Hamburg, Germany. A strong creative leader with analytical skills, her background in design and business coupled with experience working and living in the U.S. and Europe permits a unique global perspective.

An active member of the design community for over 10 years, Katrin currently serves on MCAD’s Alumni Association Board of Directors.