Becoming a Climate Designer

A 7-week course for practicing designers & related creative professionals on making a meaningful impact using your current skillset. For designers and design thinkers passionate about climate action.

Step into climate leadership through design

Find your place as a creative professional passionate about climate action

Understand the role creatives have in shaping culture and social norms. How can you move the status quo towards a healthier, equitable, more resilient, life sustaining world? Learn where you personally can fit in and how to effectively channel your energy & talents to create positive change.

Learn the most effective frameworks & tools to shape our shared future

Apply methodologies and fresh perspectives that will help you truly create the impact you desire. Learn about effective action, re-writing narratives, designing for systemic changes and more to create measurable and sustained change.

Elevate your career to apply your skills to impactful work

Create a climate-focused portfolio piece that can attract future employers while establishing yourself as a leader in climate action. Connect with creatives around the globe to help you expand a strong professional network that will support you as you build your climate career.


World-class instructors and guest lecturers

Sarah Harrison

Course Creator & Program Facilitator

Co Founder of Climate Designers 

Sarah Harrison (she/her) spent over a decade designing software & brands in San Francisco’s tech startup industry before burnout led her to start over, with no choice but to apply her skills for positive change & social impact. She co-founded The Determined in 2016 & Climate Designers in 2019 and also co-teaches a social entrepreneurship class in the interaction design graduate program at California’s College of the Arts every summer.

Marc O'Brien

Course Creator

Co-Founder for Climate Designers 
Marc O’Brien has 10+ years of experience in the social innovation space. Since 2016, he’s been working at the intersection of design and climate change. He co-founded The Determined and Climate Designers. When he’s not working on climate projects, you can find him teaching at California College of the Arts in San Francisco, CA as an adjunct faculty. Marc is also the co-author of the First Things First 2020 manifesto.

Our Guest Lecturers

Katie Patrick

Engineer, Designer, and Author (USA)

Katie Patrick is an Australian-American environmental engineer, designer, and author of How to Save the World: How to Make Changing the World the Greatest Game We’ve Ever Played. and hosts the podcast, How to Save the World, where she investigates academic research in environmental psychology. She specializes in what she calls “Fitbit for the Planet” design – which means applying data-driven gamification and behavior-change techniques to environmental problems. Katie has worked on environmental gamification projects with NASA JPL, Stanford University, UNEP, Google, the University of California, Magic Leap, and the Institute for the Future.

Katie is the founder of, a map-based application that uses satellite imaging of urban heat islands and vegetation cover to encourage urban greening and cooling initiatives. She is also the co-founder of Energy Lollipop, a Chrome extension and outdoor screen project that shows the electric grid’s CO2 emissions in real-time.

Evan Hynes

CEO and Founder, ClimateBase (USA)

Evan Hynes is CEO and Founder of Climatebase, the platform for the climate workforce. At Climatebase, we’re mobilizing talent for a climate-positive world. We’re a venture-backed startup focused on solving the #1 challenge faced by organizations working on climate: Hiring. Our platform helps talented professionals discover climate job opportunities and transition into the space — and in doing so, we help climate-focused organizations hire the mission-driven talent they need to succeed. Prior to working on climate, Evan spent 3 years working as Head Of Community at Make School, an edtech company back by Y Combinator, Andreessen Horowitz, and other top investors, which pioneered the income share model for higher education. Evan studied Fine Art, Communication, and Technology Entrepreneurship at UC Santa Barbara. He’s originally from Berkeley CA and now lives in SF, where he enjoys time outdoors with friends.

Rollie Williams

Comedian, Writer, Climate and Policy Expert (USA)

Rollie Williams is a comedian, writer, and climate science and policy expert with a masters degree from Columbia University. He is the creator of the award-winning comedy series Climate Town and has been featured in College Humor, Funny Or Die, Splitsider, Vulture, HuffPo. He is also the creator and host of the long-running live show An Inconvenient Talk Show. Rollie hosts a show about billiards on YouTube which you can google if you’re curious. He is from Colorado and BOY will he not shut up about it.

Sadie Red Wing

Designer and Student Coach, American Indian College Fund (USA)

Sadie Red Wing is a Lakota graphic designer and advocate from the Spirit Lake Nation of Fort Totten, North Dakota. Red Wing earned her BFA in New Media Arts and Interactive Design at the Institute of American Indian Arts. She received her Master of Graphic Design from North Carolina State University. Her research on cultural revitalization through design tools and strategies created a new demand for tribal competence in graphic design research. Red Wing urges Native American graphic designers to express visual sovereignty in their design work, as well as, encourages academia to include an indigenous perspective in design curriculum. Currently, Red Wing serves as a Student Success Coach for American Indian College Fund (Denver, CO) where she specializes in student retention and resource building for the Native American demographic in higher education spaces. Her work has been featured on AIGA’s Eye on Design: “Why Can’t the U.S. Decolonize Its Design Education?” (2017), Communication Arts: “Decolonizing Native American Design” (2017), and The World Policy Journal: “United Nation’s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples” (2018).

Dawn Danby

Co-founder and Principal Strategist, Spherical (USA)

Dawn Danby is co-founder and principal strategist of Spherical, an integrative research and design studio offering cosmovision remediation and ontological repair services. She conducts design research programs across scales, spanning materials, manufacturing and the built environment. Her current work supports regional-scale circular economics and integrated watershed management. Dawn spent ten years leading Autodesk’s sustainable design initiatives, advancing the development of digital tools for reducing the ecological and human impacts of design and engineering. Additionally, she served for many years on the board of National Design Award-winning Catapult Design, co-authored the bestselling Worldchanging: A User’s Guide to the 21st Century, and has taught and lectured extensively around the world. Dawn has an industrial design degree from the Rhode Island School of Design, and an MBA in Sustainable Business from Bainbridge Graduate Institute (now Presidio).


Exceptional Alumni

You’ll join exceptional alumni from all our programs, who have accomplished careers in industry, policy, and more, and have all made a commitment to focusing their career on sustainability and decarbonization. Expect a similarly accomplished peer set from the world of design, product, photography, UI/UX and the like.

I’ve actually considered leaving design to return to school to study something that could impact the climate movement more tangibly, so I was SO excited to discover the Climate Designers community. Looking forward to meeting like minded designers and getting inspiration for where I could take my career from here.

Carly Schonberg

Senior Product Designer at Climate Club (USA)

Course breakdown

Sign up to get a detailed syllabus in your inbox, or check out a week-by-week outline below.

Week One: So you're a designer concerned about our climate crisis…

Feeling like there’s got to be something you can do beyond recycling & turning off your monitor when you’re not using it? Designers have a unique set of skills & power to shift culture, industries, and business practices to make a big impact.


Topics include: Individual actions vs systems change, historical shifts in public perception of climate change, how to find your place & build a career in climate action.

Incorporating climate change in your work requires a much bigger, more expansive understanding of our world. This requires us to reconsider certain perspectives and methodologies.


Topics include: Neoliberal worldview, Colonialism, Indigenous wisdom, Climate justice, Narrative shifting.

We’ll apply our new understanding towards co-creating approaches and solutions towards our new world. This is when thinking turns into action.


Topics include: Inclusive design, Measuring impact, Behavior change, Culture jamming, Subvertism.

You can’t do this alone. Persuading others will be key in large scale systemic change. How you frame approaches and solutions matter to get as many people on board as possible.


Topics include: Leadership styles, Influence & persuasion, self awareness & self care. Influence & persuasion, self awareness & self care.

Project Week 1

Collaboration techniques for virtual & asynchronous teamwork, Ideation & validation.

Project Week 2

Finalizing your project, Preparing your pitch & storytelling, Portfolio building.

Try our FREE class: Getting Started as a Climate Designer

Get to know the course creators as they walk through their 3-part guide to building your career as a designer taking climate action.

Personalized and relevant instruction

The founders of this course bring years of experience working at the intersection of design and climate action. Since 2019, they have been supporting designers with resources, training, & helpful tools through a podcast, an 1800+ member online community, virtual events, and classes in higher-education.

Two-week design sprint

After the first four weeks you’ll split into small teams based on personal interests and:

Climate action lab groups

Once a week, you will meet with your instructors in live, small-group sessions for:

Latest course material

We update our learning material to stay cutting-edge:

Personal attention

We track every fellow’s progress closely and ensure people get the support they need:

Pricing and expected commitment

US$ 799 / 7 weeks

or 7 installments of $114/mo.

Intensive Program

7 week duration, with 5 hours of time commitment per week.

Community Learning

Each class has fellows split into groups of 20-25 with extensive skills, background, and passion.

Exclusive events

3+ guest lectures from design and climate experts, also available for later viewing.

Online Content

100% online, with instructors available via Zoom, Slack, and email.

Our fellows say it best...

Petja Doukova

It was an enriching experience. I learned so much, only to find out there's so little I know. As a designer, it's so important to think and rethink the impact of our designs so that we create a just world. I think this course is a great place to start.

Elisha Hardy

Marc and Sarah are genuine human beings who share a passion for creating and teaching others how to create the better, more livable world that we all need.

Sydney Schwindt

This class was so helpful in giving resources and examples of various climate design projects. It also was great for getting to know other like minded people in the community! Looking forward to further work through all of this!

Isobel Davis

Treasured community experience of faculty, mentors and fellows. Action focus here was very supportive of next goals. The program is interdisciplinary, equity focused, international, enriched & empowering for adapting my work for the climate space & for more impact with current projects.

Who is this program for?

A deep dive on impactful design for climate makes the program perfect for practicing designers & related professionals who want to contribute to a larger positive change with their work.

Designers of all kinds

Industrial designers, graphic designers, UX/UI designers, UX writers, service designers, design strategists, illustrators, videographers, design-centric product managers, and so many more than we can list here.

Community-first Experience

You want to network with other creative professionals who are passionate about building a climate-focused career.

Time Commitment

You have sufficient time (5 hours/week) to dedicate to the program.

Still learning design

You’re not a practicing design professional and want a comprehensive design program (these kinds of programs are typically 6-months to 2+ years of full-time study).

Too Busy

You don’t have the time to commit to a deep dive right now (you can always apply for later cohorts).

Frequently asked questions

This program is designed to be broadly useful to professionals whose work pertains to designing products, brands, campaigns, services, or experiences in general regardless of sector or geographic focus—industrial designers, graphic designers, UX/UI designers, UX writers, service designers, design strategists, illustrators, videographers, design-centric product managers, and many more.

If you’re less than 2 weeks into the program, we’ll refund you 100%. Our only request would be to give us feedback so we can improve the program.

The course is 7 weeks long. We encourage a diverse global pool of participants and understand that live event times might not work for everyone. As such, all classes will be recorded for later viewing at your convenience. We will also have a Slack channel to facilitate asynchronous discussions for the global cohort. Our expectation is that everyone will be back in sync when a new week starts.

We want this program to work for learners of all stripes, regardless of individual or organizational ability to pay. Please apply—we will make every effort to accommodate the circumstances of qualified students.

We have run two cohorts and expect to run more cohorts given ongoing demand for this course.

Kickstart your climate action journey

Join our community of professionals, experts, and educators working on climate change.