Kofi Taha

he / him

Senior Lecturer in Design & Community Engaged Learning


Visiting Designer Kofi Taha wears a charcoal suit and smiles for the camera.


  • Ed.L.D., Educational Leadership, Harvard Graduate School of Education
  • M.A., Urban Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • B.A., Political Science, Columbia University

Dr. Taha is an equity-minded facilitator, community organizer, program manager and fundraiser with over 25 years of professional experience. As part of the Affordable Design & Entrepreneurship (ADE) teaching team, he collaborates with local educators and ADE students to implement Shifting Rhythms (shiftingrhythms.org), an after-school and summer program in rural Mississippi that offers youth ages 9-15 an opportunity to express themselves through hands-on technology, arts and entrepreneurship projects. Dr. Taha served as the Associate Director of MIT D-Lab for 10 years where he partnered with communities around the world to develop, implement and evaluate community-driven design practices.This afforded him the great privilege of co-facilitating village-level technology design workshops in Uganda, Mongolia, and Haiti; advising new enterprises seeking to commercialize social impact products in Ghana, Guatemala, and Tanzania; providing support to local innovation centers in Brazil, Colombia, Mexico and India; and helping to lead the International Development Innovation Network (IDIN.org), a global community of 1000+ innovators, entrepreneurs, ecosystem builders, researchers, and educators. 

Beyond Olin, Dr. Taha is the Director of Curriculum & Facilitation at Equity Meets Design (equitymeetsdesign.com), a think & do tank that builds the capacity of individuals and organizations to intentionally design policies, programs and practices that advance their equity values. He also serves as a director on the boards of Mercy Corps (mercycorps.org), an international humanitarian organization, The Action Lab (actionlabny.org), a movement strategy and retreat space, and Public Works Alliance (publicworksalliance.org), an organization that partners with states to design post-secondary workforce development programs that serve young people navigating failed systems. Regardless of geography or whether technology is a focus, what drives his work is a commitment to improving the use of inclusive practices that lead to more equitable outcomes in historically excluded, frontline communities. Standing on the sacrifices of many ancestors, he studied political economy at Columbia University, urban planning at MIT, and educational leadership at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Dr. Taha lives with his family in Dorchester, MA but is forever from the Bronx, NY, so don't get it twisted.