Challenging the negative connotations around slums, informal settlements or favelas, students in the MFA Transdisciplinary Design program, Meagan Durlak and James Frankis, are using design to help embolden the rich array of entrepreneurship, social production and economic activity that takes place in these communities.

Their project, Markis using the power of mobile technology to help turn “citizens of informal settlements into cartographers and advocates of their space,” providing a digital infrastructure in which they can share their intimate and local knowledge of place.

Invited to contribute a series of posts for the acclaimed Metropolis Magazine, a design and architecture publication, Meagan and James recently published their first thoughts on slums and their project. Read it here.

They were also featured on ArchDaily. See it here.