Design is a fundamentally mutable practice, responsive to the world’s changing hows, whats, whys, and wheres. Engaging as a designer in this way, however, requires a companion discipline of Design Research in order to understand emerging subjects both conceptually and practically, and to build frameworks for their relationship with design.

MDP places this form of research at the center of its culture, and it is manifest in several specific programs: Curricular Studio Projects, Working Groups, and Summer Research.

Working Groups

Working Groups are a research initiative. These are thinking-and-doing spaces which nurture and introduce emergent topics that are an essential part of MDP’s approach.

Summer Research

The MDP studio has a different vibe over the Summer. We reconfigure the studio to house between 2-4 research projects led by Faculty and Visiting Researchers.


MDP has supported authors, writers and makers for over 25 years to be a space to publish new ideas that challenge design, technology, and the way we shape our world for tomorrow. From guests, faculty, alumni and students… MDP provides a research space to develop published work.

Graduate Center for Critical Practice

Graduate Center for Critical Practice is an initiative of Graduate Art and Graduate Media Design Practices (MDP) at ArtCenter College of Design. The Wind Tunnel, situated between these two programs in a former supersonic jet testing facility on Art Center’s south campus, is a forum for speakers, conferences, exhibitions, residencies, screenings, and publications.

All events are free and open to the public. All events will be held in the Wind Tunnel Gallery, 950 South Raymond Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91103. Enter through the Hixon Courtyard on Raymond Avenue. Parking is free.