Ricardo Gomes, IDSA, Chair/Associate Professor, Department of Design and Industry (DAI) | San Francisco State University
Universal design is the design of all products and environments to be usable by people of all ages and abilities, to the greatest extent possible. (Mace, 1991)
In June 2001, San Francisco State University settled a class-action lawsuit by disabled students and faculty, agreeing to make the campus more accessible. SFSU has stated that the settlement reaffirmed the university's long-standing commitment to serving the needs of students and faculty members with disabilities and a long-term program of improving accessibility.
The history, development, and evolution of universal design within the Product Design and Development Program in the Design and Industry (DAI) department at San Francisco State University (SFSU) has demonstrated the interdisciplinary applications and exchanges of the various services, resources and environment at SFSU. An interdisciplinary environment that has combined the expertise and methodology of disability advocates, and design professionals in the San Francisco Bay area, along with educators, and students at the university. This cooperative exchange has complimented the consonant academic, professional, as well as, community outreach and service learning objectives by institutions and organizations on and off campus. This coalition represents sources such as the Institute on Disabilities, the Disability Resource Center, and the Design Center for Global Needs at SFSU, as well as, Adaptive Environments in Boston, the Center for Universal Design at North Carolina State University, and the National Endowment for the Arts, Office of Access Ability.
Image above (C) North Caroline State University Center for Universal Design