Plot(s) Call for Editorial Board Members

Plot(s) Website is Live


This month, the MA Design Studies program proudly launches the online companion to our print journal, Plot(s). Volumes I, II, and III of the journal are now available to read and download on the website.


PLOT(S) Journal of Design Studies, Issue 2



PLOT(S) Call for Submissions


1) noun, A measured plan, map, scheme, diagram or other graphic representation
2) verb, To mark the course of something; to devise the sequence of events

Now in its third edition,  Plot(s): The Journal of Design Studies 2016 inquires into how design practice and design research is configured, and how it shapes individuals, societies and relations to our environment.  Plot(s) is an annual, interdisciplinary publication edited by the graduate students of the Design Studies program,  housed at Parsons The School for Design, in New York City.

As the field of Design Studies is at a formative stage, it attains its definition by praxis and evaluation.  The third edition of Plot(s) will explore both descriptive and prescriptive modes of design.  We endeavor for the journal to display a multiplicity of definitions of Design, in order to reflect the diversity of the discipline itself.

To reflect this instructive and formative nature, the theme for this year’s journal is:

Manifesto / Instruction / Dossier

Guidelines for submissions:

We ask that submissions are guided by a process that involves design thinking / reasoning.  We also strongly encourage the use of supporting visuals.  Contributors are welcome from all fields.

As a multidisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal, we accept a wide range of formats including, but not limited to, academic essays, visual essays, design research, book / exhibition reviews and design / architectural projects.  In addition to this, our website (to be launched in the Spring) will open up other multimedia formats for us to consider, such as video and audio projects!

Submissions must be properly cited with endnotes and formatted in the Chicago style upon submission.  Images must be at least 300 dpi, captioned, and copyright permissions must be obtained.  Submissions which do not fit this criteria cannot be accepted.

Please send submissions by January 3rd, 2016 via email to
Plots(s) Issue #3 will be published in Spring 2016 in print and online.

Announcing the publication of PLOT(S) Journal of Design Studies, Issue 2


The Design Studies Classes of 2015 and 2016 are pleased to announce the publication of the second issue of Plot(s), a peer reviewed, student-edited and produced journal exploring the plurality of design studies.

Access PDF here: PLOT(S)

“What’s Funny About This? Design and Process”

Estefania Acosta, Laura Sanchez, and Misha Volf, Class of 2016

Designerly WIT discoure-fantastic

Fry on you Funny about This

Pong-ticate What's Funny About This_

The Body What's Funny_

Deadline extended: Plot(s) Call for Submission

The submission deadline has been extended from January 20th to January 26th!

Please send submissions by January 26th, 2015 via e-mail to

Notice of acceptance/request for revisions: February

For any questions, please contact

Plot(s) Call for Submission Deadline: January 20th, 2015


Plot(s) Journal of Design Studies                                           Deadline: January 20th, 2015

Heroes, Heretics and Hoarders

In a designed world defined by paradox, duplicity and ultimate possibility, where do you stand?

In the quest to “solve” the world’s most pressing challenges, are designers problem seekers, solvers, or makers? There’s been a global paradigm shift. In today’s dynamic social climate designers feel a sense of ethical responsibility. However, all actions bear unintended consequences. Considering this, how does design produce heroes, heretics, and hoarders? This edition aims to explore these issues whilst also answering the questions raised by design studies.

  • Do things and technologies shape humans, or do we shape them?
  • How can the agency of things contribute to human pain?
  • Why do we design and for whom?
  • How do things mediate our interactions with the world?
  • How are we socially conditioned by designed things?
  • How do we delegate our morality to things?

Plot(s) Journal of Design Studies is an annual publication edited and produced by members of the Design Studies department. It is a student-run journal at Parsons the New School for Design, which aims to articulate the ways in which myriad forms of design practice shape and transform the human experience. We are seeking academic writing, fiction, non-fiction and visual narratives, artwork, and projects to be published in the second edition coming out Spring 2015. Submissions are open to students, recent graduates and practitioners affiliated (or not) with any institution.


Submission Guidelines:

Submissions should be between 500-1,200 words, with the inclusion of up to four images.

Photo essays or visual narratives can include up to 8 images.


Required :

All references must be properly cited as endnotes and formatted in Chicago style, upon submission.

Images must be at least 300 dpi, must have copyright permissions, and include captions.

Authors are encouraged to include a one-line bio with their submission(s).

Up to 3 pieces may be submitted for consideration.


Please send submissions by January 20th, 2015 via e-mail to

Notice of acceptance/request for revisions: February

For any questions, please contact


Screen Shot 2014-05-23 at 8.34.32 AM
We are pleased to announce the inaugural issue of Plot(s), a peer reviewed, student edited and produced journal exploring the plurality of design studies.

In an attempt to map the network of discourses within design studies, each work in Plot(s) lends a critical eye to a facet of design practice — understanding design as both a catalyst for change and as culpable for the state of our present world. As students at The New School, we do not attempt to provide an exhaustive understanding of design studies, but a glimpse into the burgeoning field.

From the Editors:
The contents of the first issue presents a selection of works demonstrating the diversity of our approaches to design. As evident from the breadth of subjects considered on the following pages, design is increasingly a term of nebulous definition. As practitioners of design studies, we are thus required to invoke flexible modes of inquiry and a willingness to step over the boundaries between disciplines. Our task as the first class in Parsons’ MA Design Studies program has been to sketch and navigate a map of this transdisciplinary landscape. In doing so, we have had no choice but to push past the traditional methods, expectations, and borders of academic work. The results continue to be an array of creative scholarship that cannot be fit neatly into any one box. So, in lieu of a box, we offer you Plot(s).

The first issue of Plot(s) is available to view in its entirety online.

We thank our fellow students, Dora Sapunar, Chen Yu Lo, Finn Ferris, Sarah Lillenberg, Divia Padayachee, Tia Remington-Bell, Vivian Cai, William Perkins, James Laslavic, Ruo Ma, Katherine Mayer, and Veronica Uribe whose collective input gave shape and color to our mission.

Lindsay Reichart, editorial director
Rachel Meade Smith, managing editor
Jhen Yi (Maggie) Lin, production manager
Gigi Polo, designer
Juan Pablo Pemberty, designer
Yoko Wand, photo editor
Natalie Nielson, copy editor
Hayley Aresenault, copy editor
Kamala Murali, peer reviewer
Komal Sharma, peer reviewer
Laura Wing, peer reviewer & PR manager
Salem Tsegaye, contributor

Program Contact

Caroline Dionne, Program Director

Program Update

Parsons is not currently admitting new students to this master’s degree program. Parsons is now offering a Graduate Minor in Design Studies that is designed to complement the MA History of Design and Curatorial Studies and other graduate programs across the university in design, liberal arts, and social research.