Skip to main content
Innovation Design Engineering (MA/MSC)

Fatimah El-Rashid

Fatimah El-Rashid is a future-oriented transdisciplinary designer, thinker and maker. She has a broad range of experience in taking a planet-centred/life-centred approach to designing innovations that tackle wicked environmental problems and meet emerging needs for various industries. Her work is inspired by the ways in which we interact with each other, but also with our planet, our objects, and the data we generate.

Fatimah also co-founded shADe - a digital startup helping halt fast fashion by blocking digital marketing from unsustainable brands. 

Since stepping foot in the design industry in 2020, Fatimah’s work has won various international awards, been exhibited at the Somerset House, and featured in media outlets.

Selected Achievements

Fast Company World Changing Ideas Award (2021)

London Design Biennale: Design in an Age of Crisis (2021, Somerset House)

European Space Agency: 8th European Conference on Space Debris (2021)

The Regenerative List 100 Pioneers (2020)

Academic Experience

MA/MSc Innovation Design Engineering (IDE) - RCA & Imperial College London

MSc Environmental Science - University of Melbourne

BSc Environmental Science & Engineering - University of Melbourne

Professional Experience

Fatimah has 4 years’ experience as a senior consulting analyst with a track record in designing and delivering programmes for multilateral and bilateral organisations in the fields of urban climate resilience, environmental remediation, forest conservation, smart agriculture and low carbon development.

As an environmentalist, I try hard to adhere to sustainable living practices; but sometimes it can be a struggle. Does that mean I’m reluctant to change my behaviour? Or could there be a fundamental flaw in our understanding of human behaviour, and in turn, designing for behaviour change?

Despite the very high profile of sustainability, this increased global awareness and intent is not translating into consumer action, and for many of us, it has not fundamentally changed the way we behave. There appears to be a paradox at the heart of it all, commonly referred to as the ‘intention-action gap’. This gap is the difference between what people believe, or say, and what they do.

I explored the opportunity to close the intention-action gap in the context of mega-events, partly chosen as my form of escapism from the global pandemic and lockdown restrictions, but largely because the global reach and mass appeal of mega-events means that they have huge potential to catalyse behavioural change in millions of people around the world.

The final concept is COOEE, an Augmented Reality (AR) platform that helps event organisers facilitate pro-environmental behaviours during events without compromising the spectator experience. 

COOEE leverages the power of behavioural economics to understand specific points of decision-making that are crucial to nudging user action towards a desired behaviour. As such, COOEE has the potential to drastically improve behaviour with only a few tweaks. As the saying goes, “it’s small habits that lead to big changes.”

— COOEE is an enabling technology that harnesses the power of Augmented Reality (AR) to help event organisers facilitate pro-environmental behaviour during events without compromising the spectator experience.
— COOEE facilitates waste avoidance by nudging event organisers towards adopting digital entertainment as a substitute for balloon releases and firework shows, both of which generate single-use material waste.
— COOEE facilitates waste collection by automatically navigating users to the nearest bin, and in doing so, nudges them towards overcoming seemingly small barriers to waste disposal. This has the potential to increase waste collection by 20%.
— COOEE facilitates waste recycling by helping them automatically identify the correct recycling bin, and in doing so, nudges them towards overcoming informational bias. This has the potential to increase recycling efforts by 35%.