Professor Ji-Ping Chang


In recent years, a lot of disasters have constantly arisen around the world, which has raised our awareness of environmental protection. Professor Ji-Ping Chang has led students of the Department of Industrial Design of Fudan University in Shanghai ( in research for environmental protection, for disaster-relief work, and for the low-income. What Pro. Chang has done is worth our attention. We can take this opportunity to understand this research more and even globally participate.

We invited Professor Ji-Ping Chang, a Sacred Heart alumna and renowned environmental designer and professor, to come back to Taiwan and deliver a speech that shares her research, teaching techniques and social work.

Growing up in Taiwan, Professor Chang completed her post secondary education in the U.S. and has worked in the States and Europe for more than twenty years. Emigrating to the mainland eight years ago, she is now teaching in the College of Visual Arts of Fudan University. With interactive teaching techniques, Professor Chang has shared her teaching with renowned colleges and universities in Japan and America. Without a doubt, Professor Chang definitely sets a good teaching model.

Last summer (2010), Professor Chang worked with the D-Lab experts at MIT and successfully created carbonized soybeans and wheat stalks. They produced Chinese coal balls at a cost 200 RMB lower than before at a time. Based on the result of their experiment, each coal ball could produce 3,800 calories. It is obvious that all she did was protect the earth and our health, prevent low-income people from poverty and develop sustainable energies in the world.

Since this March (2011), Professor Chang, working with Tzu Chi Foundation (, has begun her studies around rescue-aimed materials in Hualien. For example, she developed a stalk-based energy and provided tri-functional equipment used for achieving warmth, cooking meals and boiling water in an effort to avoid the problems caused by natural disasters such as power failure, water shortage and cooking problems.

On October 22nd, Professor Chang will share the documentary film “Heritage Heroes” recorded by the BBC. Telling a story of “the designs made for the majority,” the film shows how Professor Chang led young designers to show their concerns more for the low-income who are actually the majority as well. Professor Chang believes in Yang-ming Wang’s idea that people’s basic needs in daily life are the main concern for a country. Thus, she cares about understanding the daily necessities used by people very much and puts her design efforts into helping release the low-income from poverty.

Photo Album of the day

Notes during presentation:


Will share three transformations...

What SH education means to me...

Where Ji-Ping comes from (1966) -- graduating in 1972
In Buddhist teaching -- how a person learns, the vessel needs to be cleaned and creates a void - then student really ready to learn and become who they are
Giving courage to continue with what you want to learn and do -- develop the inner light and follow
Transformationl power of SH education -- LOVE (received from teachers, sisters, and peers)
Created lifelong sustained friendships -- support of each other through the deep connections of SH

Changed majors in college seven (7) times
Chinese LIterature
English Literature
Philosophy (same philosophy reflected in literature -- ideology repeats itself in visual art -- in abstract ways
Graphic Design
Art (while teaching on campus)
Environmental Design
Exploration of 2-dimensional to 3-dimensional
Build an architecture of life and learning -- use a solid foundation

The only way to grow was to leave home (went to the US - Pennsylvania)

Knowing when to stop is good...when the composition is good enough

The sense of scale, color, texture, proportion and freedomof air flow....know when to stop
Learn from the practices of others...

Seed planted from MSB -- "For the sake of onw child, I founded the Society" -- Stays with students for life throughout all transitions (Do we engage oiur students in this thought and feeling?)
If I have made a difference in one living being...that is our goal


E.I. duPont (HTLV Antibody)
Family Li Restaurant (Shanghai)
Glass Works

What Professor Change does for SH education and others....

BBC/Time video
Heritage Heroes -

Youth in China
Restoration and preservation of Cichen
Theme is based on the past, present and future -- attempting to develop social awareness (preservation)

Teaching collaborative classes at University

Sustainable design (NA teaching design
Design for the Majority (Design for the other populaton of marginalized for services)
90% (of 6.8 billion) 2.9 billion earn less than $2/day -- 1.1 billion earn less than $1/day
This means no access to services deserved for life and sustainability (health, water, food, etc.)

Looking for low cost design to provide such services

Victor Papanek (
Design for the Real World (
How Things Don't Work (
The Green Imperative: Natural Design for the Real World (

"The only important part of design is how it relates to people."
Design for the community aligns with the Millennium Goals (

Cooper-Hewitt Exhibition + Design for the other 90%

CHExhibition Resources --

Industrial Designers Society of America

One graduate will provide for a family ($500 per year turns into $500 per month)

Products and services that are designed to help the low income families get out of poverty

Goals and Objectives:
All products and services cannot exceed 3-6 monthly income for the famliies poverty ($90-$180 -- upper limit)
Product costs have to saty within $30-$60
With the purchase of the products and services...moves family out of poverty within a year

Teaching the collaborative
Speak via Skype weekly with San Jose State professor
Share syllabus

DSID 124. Design for All
Designing for as broad a percentage of the population as possible. Course focuses on accessible design despite physical, cognitive and/or socioeconomic obstacles. Course is repeatable for a total of 6 units.
Prerequisite: Credit for DSID 032A Portfolio Review.Prerequisite: Pass portfolio review.Lab 9 hoursRepeatable for creditNormal Grade Rules
3 units

Use Skype
FTP for uploading assignments

Project (humanitarian aid)

Sores on hands of children
Hay burning season -- air pollution
Agricultural waste

The use of bio fuel (wood, cow dung, etc.) #1 killer and health hazard in children from ages 1-5 (Biomass smoke -- a mixture of gases)


Deforestation -- making charocal from agricultural waste, not trees and allows a way for people to make money
Motivation is about giving and what goes arond comes around.

1. Keynote: Ji Ping Chang (her name means "remember your roots"
Shanghai School of Visual Arts
- Intro: alumna of Taipei, now working with the poor by using her art creativity
-- came to SH in 1966

Three Transformative Experiences
a. First Transformation: What SH education did to me
- 1966-1972 but "I do not remember what I learned, which is a good thing. In Buddhist teaching, the root vessel must be cleaned. SH cleansed my vessel. Then, I was ready to learn and connect to that inner light, to become who I am" (paraphrased).
-- in those days, we laughed all of the time
-- I designed my own college education, and it took me 8 years to do it. I changed my major many times. I had the courgae to change many times becaue of my SH education - the love we received from the Religious, faculty, and peers. Life long, sustained friendship. Support for one another.
- learning English in those days by discovering the dogs on campus spoke English. Mr. Lu, in charge of the kitchen staff... the Mothers spoke English to the dogs...e.g. "sit down"
- eight major changes
- moved to Philadelphia "because I had to leve my parents to grow"
- BA and BS
-- Westchester State College, majored in English and literature, then learned linguistics
-- then moved to art while teaching on campus because they had a Chinese language program
-- philosophy
-- art history - entire ideology repeating itself in the visual arts
-- music history - all elements make sense, the Tao of things
-- desire to build an architecture of knowledge needing a strong foundation
-- literature -> linguistics -> printmaking -> graphic arts (Phila Academy of Arts) -> environmental design -> form/ product (industrial) design
--- knowing when to stop is a very important point in design
----- "when I breath as I could in Sacred Heart, then I stop..."
- a seed from MSB: "for the sake of one child..." -> "stuck with me and helped me through my most difficult years" - moving to China
- judge everything by the moment when I die

b. Second Transformation: What I did to others in China
- BBC documentary: "Heroes of Heritage" series, projects that illustrate preserving heritage
- developing next generation of designers to assume resonsibility to preserve tradition and environmental responsibility
- collaborative platform since 2008
- "Design for the Majority" ****
-- designing for the other 90% of the world's population who have little or no access to most of the products and services (10% Europe and US)
-- The $2/day families do not have regular access to food, clean water, education, transportation, or shelter.
-- roots in teh 1960s and 1970s to find simple, low-coast solutions to combat poverty
-- Victor Papanek, father of Design for the Majority
--- "Design For the Real World" published in 1971 - great impact
--- "How THings Don't Work" 1977
--- "The Green Imperative" 1995
- products and services for the low income people
- collaborative project/learning with San Jose University
- "Collaborating Between East and West"

c. Third Transformation: China-based energy project, humanitarian aid with Buddhist community
Tzu Chi Foundation: ****
- hay burning season -environmental waste
- cold sores on hands of children due to cold; no heat source
- burning biofuel (mud stoves, wood, cow dung, crop residue) - very dangerous
-- biofuel #1 killer in children ages 1-5
-- biomass smoke contains a mix of gases and suspended particles that are cancer-causing elements
-- 1.5 m mortalities in children; 1 m acute resp. infections in children
-- deforestation
--- Haiti 98% deforested
--- MIT Project: Amy Smith: **** and
**** and
-----fuel from fields, e.g. making charcoal which is cleaner than burning wood or cow dung
(Gerry Grossman)