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Better for All: Diversity in Design


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Bringing diversity into your design goes beyond diverse imagery. To connect with a wide range of end users, it's essential to think about how your design can be more inclusive and accessible at all points of the process.

In this installment of our Better for All series we're looking at how designers can improve representation and make diversity the standard. Design is a powerful tool that can improve creativity, create inclusivity and improve accessibility. Here are some considerations to help you craft more diverse designs.

Better Representation

Society has been conditioned to believe that homogeneity and non-diversity is the default. However, no two humans are the same, making diversity the common reality that unites us.

While designing, start with empathy and think sensitively about your audiences. Ask yourself who has been underrepresented. Ask yourself if there's any bias in current design trends. Ask yourself if there is an opportunity to redefine stereotypes. Then, challenge the status-quo.

Some changes to improve representation are not making light beige skin tones the default for characters/avatars and avoid using blue and pink to represent men and women, respectively. Or take that a step further and create a non-binary character whose gender identity can't be categorized as exclusively male or female.

Better Accessibility in Design

Throughout the design process, it's important to think about how to make your work accessible to everyone. Fortunately, we live in a time with no shortage of technology that improves accessibility. Consider how your design works with screen readers, braille display, text-to-speech technology, screen magnifier, zoom in features, high contrast browsers or themes.

Some tools worth exploring:

Readability in design is especially important when you look at the numbers. 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women are color blind. 1 in 30 people have low vision. 1 in 188 people are blind. Color is one area that can greatly impair or improve readability. Try and use color to highlight or complement and ensure sufficient contrast between text and background.

Better Cultural References

While diverse representation is the goal, make sure to avoid stereotypical depictions of minority groups. Do your research and engage with the community you're looking to represent. They can help you be mindful of the history behind certain design patterns, symbols or cultural differences that are not easily recognizable to those outside of the culture.

Start your research here with this article from The Next Web, called How to avoid stereotypes when designing for global markets.

Even color isn't universal in its cultural interpretations. For example, red has positive connotations in China, as opposed to negative connotations in Western culture. Not to say that you should avoid certain colors, but when designing for a global audience, you'll want to consider the different cultural context around colors.

Design plays a big part in how we perceive our world and interact with it. Considering diversity in your design is an important step towards building a world where we all feel welcome.


We hope you find our Better for All series helpful in shaping a more diverse and inclusive space. Stay tuned for more blog posts in our series on diverse design and improving accessibility to create an experience that's better for all.

Follow us on Twitter at @samsung_dev for more tips on designing and developing for Samsung.

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      When you design with diversity, equity and inclusion in mind you're not only doing the right thing, but you're also creating more opportunities for growth. Through better design you can improve inclusivity and make diversity the standard.
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      What does diversity, equity and inclusion mean to you?
      Eglantina: It's part of a well-geared machine. Incorporating these principles into your work and environment makes the process pleasant; it also as opens new opportunities for your business.
      Manpreet: It means to include and respect people with different ethnicity, geography, culture, and beliefs to have a more inclusive society.
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      Eglantina: Our store provides content globally. Therefore, we study and have concept meetings to develop the most appropriate, inclusive designs that fit the national, racial, and religious cultures of our audiences. We always try not to offend or hurt anyone.
      Manpreet: There are two approaches. First is to not design stuff which promotes non-equality and the second is to create designs that promote inclusiveness. When designing new Themes, we make sure not to design anything which would offend any groups of people or individual beliefs. We also create multiple Themes with diversity in mind.
      What inspired you to start making inclusive designs?
      Eglantina: We've always thought about how to make our Themes more inclusive for our audiences. When we see a group of people embracing what is right for them, it inspires us to create more inclusive designs and makes us feel part of the group.
      Manpreet: Being conscious about our surroundings and society at large, we saw a lot of bias towards certain sets of people. This inspired us to do what we could to create inclusivity. Just because a person believes in a particular way of living or comes from a different background, should not be criteria to exclude them.
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      Eglantina: The "Black Lives Matter: Rainbow" Theme was created last year in response to the BLM movement that was happening in the US. We saw a very positive response from that inclusive design.
      Manpreet: A couple of examples are our Themes "Black History" for Black History Month and "Rainbow" for Pride.

      Where do you source best practices and resources for inclusive design work?
      Eglantina: We stay up-to-date with news, trends, movements, etc. through social media and news channels that provide information from around the world. Another source we take into consideration are comments and messages from Samsung Galaxy users.
      How has designing with DE&I in mind influenced your career?
      Eglantina: It makes you a more creative designer, since you are exposed to endless inspiration.
      Manpreet: It makes your work as a designer more satisfying and fulfilling.
      Do you have any advice on how others can design with DE&I in mind?
      Eglantina: Understanding and keeping an open mind about other peoples' ideas and views in your workspace or even among your audience will help you develop a strong presence as a designer.
      Manpreet: Make it about the greater good. When we all work to promote DE&I, we can make this world a better place.
      Thanks to Eglantina and Manpreet for sharing their insights on designing for DE&I. Considering diversity in your design is an important step towards building a world where we all feel welcome.
      We hope you found our 'Better for All' series helpful in shaping a more diverse and inclusive space. Stay tuned for the final blog post in our series on improving accessibility in design to create an experience that's better for all.
      Follow us on Twitter at @samsung_dev for more tips on designing and developing for Samsung.
      View the full blog at its source





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