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Turning Point

Turning Point

client: Turning Point Macomb

When Turning Point, a domestic violence shelter in Macomb County, Michigan, approached me to redesign their website, I used the opportunity to put systems thinking and sustainability principals to work.

I first identified the systems involved; all inputs and outputs of the main and sub-systems. This gave me a good overview of all stakeholders and potential outcomes of the systems.

The next step was to identify the problems with the current system. This involved isolating patterns. What wasn’t working and why?

I identified pattern solutions that truly utilized human-centered design and improved the site use (User Experience) for all stakeholders in the system (users, Turning Point staff, as well as website managers).


View the Case Study


Jeans Infographic

Jeans Infographic

This is a storytelling graphic depicting the supply chain of denim jeans as viewed through the sustainability principles of The Natural Step Framework.

It illustrates the four system conditions of the NSF, which state:

To become a sustainable society we must …

1. eliminate our contribution to the progressive buildup of substances extracted from the Earth’s crust (for example, heavy metals and fossil fuels)

2. eliminate our contribution to the progressive buildup of chemicals and compounds produced by society (for example, dioxins, PCBs, and DDT)

3. eliminate our contribution to the progressive physical degradation and destruction of nature and natural processes (for example, over harvesting forests and paving over critical wildlife habitat); and

4. eliminate our contribution to conditions that undermine people’s capacity to meet their basic human needs (for example, unsafe working conditions and not enough pay to live on).

These system principles are represented by what I refer to as system condition “short” names:

1. Take

2. Make

3. Break

4. Needs


On 29, Nov 2012 | In | By Sarah Jane


This poster was created as part of a project I developed to encourage community engagement, increase network connections and promote sustainable practices as a business strategy for small business. The idea began as a meme and morphed into a community event.

Daily Eco Ride

Daily Eco Ride

This project involved strategizing, conceptualizing and visually communicating a solution to address the issue of Peak Oil. My solution was an electric vehicle carpool for commuters. Participants could choose a route and passengers via an iPhone app, website or by phone. Each car would have an assigned driver to pick up all riders, drop them at their respective locations, and then park the car for charging. At the end of the day, the driver would reverse the route, picking up the riders and returning them home. The car would then be stored in a garage for charging and maintenance.


Below is a mind map of the strategy.

Sustainable Systems Flow Graphic

Sustainable Systems Flow Graphic

Visual Communication: Sustainable Systems Flow Graphic

This graphic was created as part of a community development project (that I will post soon). It visually illustrates some of the problems and sustainable solutions that were applied to the project. The graphic deplicts sustainable issues in design, development and production phases of the project.