Design

Understand client goals, assemble a responsive team, and manage the design team through a well-defined plan, schedule and budget.

The design process for the Cohen Center for Interactive Learning involved audience identification, program development, identification and contracting of architects, exhibit designers, software and hardware developers, a/v and lighting designers and fabricators, working together with GMRI’s EDU staff, who were driving the pedagogy and student experience.

Program examples include collaboration with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, MIT and the New England Aquarium to design an exhibit to describe to public audiences NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission. One exhibit was deployed at the New England Aquarium, and the second exhibit travelled to shopping malls in Maine and around the U.S.

In both facilities and program designs, funding of design, implementation and operational aspects is an essential competent. I’ve had extensive direct experience in communicating with individuals, corporations, foundations and state and federal agencies to secure funding for education facilities and programs.

I’ve written successful proposals and served as Principal Investigator or Co-investigator on projects funded by numerous Federal agencies, including the National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA), U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Science Foundation (NSF), as well as dozens of national and regional foundations.

Schooling Tank Design, 2004

Complete Design, 2011

Build

Once a plan has been developed and approved, the design team needs to shift to an effective implementation mode. I have had extensive experience in assembling well-coordinated and highly-motivated teams to bring a plan to fruition. Each of the programs described above moved smoothly from the design phase through approvals, funding, development and implementation.

Building Design, 2004

Completed Building, 2014

Make

I’ve long been interested in industrial history and mechanical objects, and I’ve always enjoyed using tools to make things. These interests have fused into a lamp-making enterprise that involves obsolete industrial objects and basic machine tools. I find that the lamps can’t be designed until I identify the central object that defines their look and feel. The lamp-making process has also enabled some interesting research into energy-efficient LED bulbs, including one that is cooled by liquid paraffin.

Promote

Once a good idea has been conceived, a persistent constituency of support must be developed and sustained, and a detailed understanding of the concepts and contexts that underlie the idea must be persuasively shared with potential stakeholders. I have had a lengthy history of promoting big ideas to multiple constituencies at local, regional, national and international levels.

2016

Partnering with XhibitNet, Parabolica Design contracted with a research and education institution in Oregon to provide institutional development guidance and program development expertise to replicate two inquiry-based science education platforms originally designed and deployed by the Gulf of Maine Research Institute.

Served as an adult mentor for Student-Driven Learning pilot at Cape Elizabeth High School. In the pilot program, 10 students designed their own independent study projects, ranging from documentary filmmaking and helicopter design and engineering to neuroscience, data analytics and e-commerce. For 2017, the program has been expanded to include 30 students.

Serve as a Board member for PechaKucha (PK) Portland, a series of public-speaking events structured around 20 slides, each of which automatically advances every 20 seconds. PK Portland is part of a global network of over 900 PK organizations.

2015

Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Science Education Seminar, Citizen Science: Immersed in Maine’s Natural Ecosystems, co-presented with Dana Hutchins, President & Creative Director, Image Works.

PechaKucha Global, 3D Problem-Solving, PechaKucha Portland, one of 10 presentations each in over 100 cities worldwide, focusing on design. The PechaKucha format allows 20 slides per presenter with 20 seconds to talk about each slide.

2014

White House Energy Datapalooza, finalist for Best Overall App, U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Data Challenge

Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) keynote, Orono, ME

Why Maine Matters: Managing Change in a Complex World, TEDx Youth at John Bapst Memorial High School, Bangor, ME

Customer-Facing Programs panel, U.S. Department of Energy IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Conference, Washington, DC

2013

Why Maine Matters: How Small Places Change the World, TEDx Youth at Cape Elizabeth High School, Cape Elizabeth, ME

U.S. Department of Energy Smart Grid Investment Grant panel, IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Conference, Washington, DC

2012

Panelist, 100Kin10 Solution Session, Los Angeles, CA

2011

Indigenous Innovation: How Small Places Can Change the World, TEDx Dirigo, Portland, ME

White House Energy Datapalooza, Washington, DC

PowerHouse: Student Engagement with Household Electricity Usage, National Science Teachers Association, San Francisco, CA

PowerHouse briefing, Energy Efficiency Standards Group, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA

2006

Immersing Students in Research at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Museums & the Web, Albuquerque, NM

European Collaborative for Science, Industry & Technology Expositions (ECSITE), Vantaa, Finland

2000

U.S. National Academy of Sciences delegation, Helsinki, Finland

1997

Turning Passive Learners into Principal Investigators, National Marine Educators Association, Chicago, IL

1994

Space Available: Learning from Satellites, NASA exhibit, National Science Teachers Association, Anaheim, CA

1980

New Partnerships to Finance the Solar Transition, International Solar Energy Society, Phoenix, AZ

Private Sector Participation in Innovative Energy Demonstrations, Solar Energy Research Institute, Seattle, WA

1975

U.S. Senate Select Committee on Small Business, Portland, ME

 

promote_tedx_dirigo promote_maine_magazine promote_pph AL_TEDxCE promote_pechakucha

 

Contact

alan.lishness@gmail.com

(207) 807-7099

 

Back to Top