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How equity-centered research benefits kids with Sheryl Cababa

Release date: May 8, 2023

My guest this episode is Sheryl Cababa. Sheryl is the Chief Design Officer at Substantial, an insights, design, and development firm based in Seattle, WA. Sheryl and her colleagues are working with amazing partners – like The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation – and using equity-centered research to improve education technology. Sheryl and I discuss what “equity-centered research” is and how it might benefit the kids in your life. More information about Sheryl and her new book, Closing the Loop: Systems Thinking for Designers, can be found below.

Biography of Sheryl Cababa

Sheryl Cababa is the Chief Design Officer at the Insights, Design + Development Studio, Substantial, and a multi-disciplinary design strategist with more than two decades of experience. She is focused on reinventing the approaches of learning and collaboration in today’s educational environment to help equity-centered research affirm and advance relationships between institutions, educators, and students.

Sheryl has worked extensively in human-centered design within the social impact space. She specializes in developing tools and methods for designers to expand their mindsets beyond user-centered design, anticipates unintended consequences, and engage in systems thinking.

Her recent work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation includes leading student voice research to inform the K-12 Balance The Equation Grand Challenge. Sheryl works with their teams to provide equity-centered technical assistance to their grantees, designing the Use Case Guide for demand-side thinking programs, and conducting extensive design research with both U.S. Programs and Global Health teams. Her book, Closing the Loop: Systems Thinking for Designers, was released in early 2023.


Substantial Edtech

Closing the Loop: Systems Thinking for Designers




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