Web Directions Conferences for web and digital professionals

The full Design Leaders ’19 program is here

We’re really excited to announce the program for Design Leaders ’19, our second Design Leaders conference, taking place in Melbourne on April 10. And early bird registrations are now open!

Design Leaders was created to help those leading and managing design teams, as well as those aspiring to transition into these roles, address the unique challenges design leadership presents.

What happens on the day?

Our aim is combine presentations, with hands on exercises, and plenty of scope you you to connect with and discuss with your peers.

The day breaks into three sessions.

Session one: put your oxygen mask on first before helping others

Session one focusses on you as a leader–as they say on those inflight safety videos no one watches, “put your oxygen mask on first before helping others”. We’ll look at the mental health impacts of leading and managing, how to lead design team as an introvert, how to keep designing when you are a design leader, and how to integrate your ethical values into the things you design.

Session two: your team, and your work

Session two shifts focus to the teams we work with, the the things we work on. We’ll look at how great design teams start with transparency, how to design good experiences for design teams, and hear about some cutting edge design practices and about the latest in design systems.

Session three: Black Mirror Brainstorms–thinking the worst of your design

Then, after lunch, it’s time to get your hands dirty.

We’ve seen all major social media platforms (and much more) abused and weaponised. Used to subvert democracies, foment ethnic hatred and violence.
But the misuse of digital products and services isn’t just on the world stage. They open other vectors for intimate abuse, stalking, surveillance.
The naive days of expecting the best of the good intentions with which we design and build our products and services are over. But what then is to be done about it?
In security, penetration testing (or pen testing) is widely used to find security flaws and vulnerabilities in systems.
Dan Brown, with the concept of “Abusability Testing”, and Aaron Z Lewis, with “Black Mirror Brainstorms” (named after the dystopian science fiction series) have proposed a similar idea for exploring flaws in systems that allow for abuse, and other negative outcomes with the aim of closing off these avenues for misuse.

In this final session of Design Leaders, we’ll consider common ways in which the things we design can be misused, with insights from Eva Penzeymoog, and former lead design on Twitter’s abuse team, Jon Bell, then conduct our own Black Mirror Brainstorm. Hopefully the type of exercise you can take back and do with your teams for years to come.

All the details are now at the Design Leaders site. Early bird pricing is available until March 16, so register now to get the best possible deal.

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Thanks for an amazing few days Web Directions. So many great themes of empathy, inclusion, collaboration, business impact through design, and keeping our future deeply human.

Laura van Doore Head of Product Design, Fathom

Join us in 2019:

  • Web Directions Design 2019

    Australia's product design conference with the world's leading expert

    Melbourne April 11 & 12 2019

  • Web Directions Code 2019

    Australia's conference for JavaScript and Front End Engineers

    Melbourne June 20 & 21 2019

  • Web Directions Product 2019

    Australia's conference for Product professionals

    Melbourne August 1 & 2 2019

  • Web Directions Summit 2019

    Our legendary event. Three big tracks,–Product, Design and Developer focused.

    Sydney November 2019