How we work

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Our work is framed by a rigorous approach that challenges deep-rooted power dynamics and creates coalitions of community stakeholders who are able to investigate how current system design has driven and perpetuates inequitable outcomes.

In every community we partner with, we start our work by partnering with people who have lived experience of the systems we’re redesigning. While most system reform work is done using input from ‘experts’, we understand that to design equitable and effective systems, the voices of people using those systems must be continuously centered. Going beyond input, we seek to partner with and employ individuals with lived expertise to co-design and facilitate our processes. 

Driven by our work with community members, we execute an analysis of system practices, structures, policies, and outcomes. Based on our findings, we partner with communities to assist with the implementation work, focusing on building the capacity of local leaders to continue the work. While our products vary across communities, we only take on projects that are fundamentally transformative. 

Our work consistently works to change the lived realities of those who are the most deeply disenfranchised. At NIS, we believe that when we design with and for people at the margins of current systems, we design a world that is more accessible for all of us.