Lee-Sean Huang is the cofounder and creative director of Foossa, a consultancy that helps organizations tell stories, design services, and build community for a more inclusive and resilient future. His expertise is on the intersection between design and democracy. He is interested in the role of participation and play in the future of education, work, health, and civic engagement. 

30 Second Self-Introduction by Lee-Sean Huang, Cofounder and Creative Director of Foossa

His work ranges from redesigning the experience of employee health and wellness at a Fortune 500 corporation to helping agencies of the United Nations better manage their institutional knowledge and refresh their public stories in changing times. He has taught senior organizers of the SEIU (Service Employees International Union) ways to rethink labor organizing in a networked age, advised a major social network on the multiple and shifting meanings of friendship, and conducted research supported by the European Union to build tools to scale online citizen debate and deliberation. 

Lee-Sean's career in designing participation and building movements began when he was a student at Harvard, where he studied Government and engaged as a community organizer and human rights activist. He later honed his campaigning and organizing skills running online-centered campaigns for Avaaz and Human Rights Watch. Prior to co-founding Foossa, Lee-Sean was the founding member of the design team at Purpose, a public-benefit consultancy that builds movements and new power models to tackle the world's biggest problems. 

Lee-Sean regularly teaches and writes about community-centered design and social innovation. He is a part-time lecturer at New York University, Parsons School of Design at the New School, and the School of Visual Arts. He has written for publications including GOOD Magazine, Fast Company, and the Huffington Post. He contributed to Wisdom Hackers, an anthology of essays by artists, activists and entrepreneurs published by The Pigeonhole in 2014 that explored deep questions of contemporary life. He was also co-author of the political science debate textbook Freedom Vs. Security: The Struggle For Balance published by Central European University Press in 2009.

In addition to a bachelor's degree in Government from Harvard, Lee-Sean holds a masters degree from ITP, the Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University. He serves as a board member of the Japan Exchange and Teaching Alumni Association of New York and the Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation. He previously served as a founding trustee of the Awesome Foundation New York. He also trains and teaches capoeira, an Afro-Brazilian martial art disguised as a dance, at the New York Capoeira Center


Connect with Lee-Sean

LinkedIn / Twitter: @leesean / Email: ls(at)foossa(dot)com

Lee-Sean is available for workshops, event/conference facilitation, and keynote presentations. Please contact us at hello(at)foossa(dot)com for booking requests. 

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Recent & Upcoming Appearances

Product Design & Strategy Panel - Asian Creative Collective, New York, October 2019

Member-Centered Service Design - Filene Research Group, Boston, August 2019

The Fundamentals of Design Thinking - Workshop at the Create and Cultivate Vision Summit, Miami, December 2018

The Radical Roots of Design Tools, Lightning Talk at Capital One Service Design Meetup, November 2018

Innovation through co-creation – how to add value from the local user perspective - Workshop at Tomorrow’s Urban Travel, Copenhagen, Denmark, October 2018

Designing for Financial Empowerment - Public lecture in Philadelphia, November 17, 2017



Media Highlights

Design Education is Moving Toward Specialization—Can Colleges Keep Up? - Lee-Sean comments on the changing design education and talent recruitment context in AIGA’s Eye on Design

The Change-Makers - Profile of Foossa and interview with Lee-Sean in Ethos Paper

How a Group of Asian-Americans Is Spreading Support for Black Lives Matter - Time magazine feature about Lee-Sean’s activist work

Investing in the Awesome, No Strings Attached - Story about the Awesome Foundation by Richard Morgan for the New York Times

Design Thinking Fundamentals
1 minute 22 seconds

Parsons at Open Campus faculty Lee-Sean Huang tells us how design thinking can be utilized to prototype and test creative business solutions.

Bringing Diverse and Inclusive Futures to Life
6 minutes 38 seconds

Lightning talk delivered at the Asian Americans for Equality conference at New York University, 2017

Design Challenges at the Rwandan Genocide Memorial
25 minutes

Community-centered design and storytelling for action: How do we facilitate diverse groups to craft their stories, share them, and spark real-world social action? Lee-Sean Huang, cofounder and creative director of Foossa, will share about his creative approach, focusing on his collaboration with UX for Good and the Kigali Genocide Memorial.

The Big Data Society
30 minutes

Foossa's Lee-Sean Huang facilitated a conversation at the Center for Global Policy Solutions Future Of Wealth Summit in Washington with experts Mary Madden from Data & Society Research Institute and Taylor Moore from Center for Democracy & Technology. The introduced the concept of Big Data and discussed ways to make algorithms more accountable to issues of social equity. 

Impacto: The Future of Business
17 minutes 37 seconds

In December 2014, Lee-Sean spoke at the Impacto: Future of Business conference at Itaú Cultural in São Paulo, Brazil. Impact is a free public event sponsored by Google and Itaú with assistance from Itaú Cultural and the Telefônica Brasil Foundation. He talked about the importance of historical and community-centered perspective in the process of creative problem-solving process. The presentation is in English after a brief introduction in Portuguese.

The Awesome Foundation: Investing in the Inspirational
14 minutes

CGTN America Interviews Awesome Foundation trustees Christina Xu, Jesse Chan-Norris, and Lee-Sean Huang.

The Business of Giving
8 minutes 48 seconds

Conversation with The Business of Giving host Denver Frederick about the Measured.Design conference at SVA, Foossa's approach to community-centered design, Design for Financial Empowerment, and the Awesome Foundation.