During the spring semester of 2016, the MIT Collaborative Design Studio partnered with local worker-owned cooperatives to create civic media projects grounded in real-world community needs. Three MIT students joined a staff member from the Center for Civic Media at the MIT Media Lab in partnering with one of the office coordinators of a cooperative of Brazilian housecleaners called Vida Verde. Over the course of several months, we worked together to develop technology products to streamline the organization’s operations and communications.
More specifically, the goal of the project was to change some of Vida Verde's systems in order to reduce the coordinator's workload; to improve communication between the coordinator, cleaners, and clients; and to automate tedious steps of existing processes. While we briefly entertained the idea of creating a standalone product that would solve all of the coordination issues Vida Verde was facing, we ultimately elected to use a pre-developed, free platform Google Calendar to help coordinate cleaning schedules. We also developed an instant quote widget to ease the co-op coordinator’s workload in onboarding new clients.
The collaboration between Vida Verde and the MIT Co-Design Studio eventually resulted in three projects: 1. an online price quote calculator for the Vida Verde website, 2. a new internal calendar system for scheduling cleanings, and 3. an upgrade to the cooperative’s website to make it more easily navigable and search engine optimized (SEO) to ensure that it shows up readily in Google searches.
Vida Verde Women's Cooperative, Val Healy, Tais Delazari, Emilie Reiser, Rachel Goor
Codesign, User Research, User Experience Design, Interaction Design