Design Kompany is a boutique studio consulting on strong concepts for clients who are ready to ‘N+1,’ that is to say, DK is for people who see the value of thinking at the edges for new perspectives, and of getting out of the box. DK has worked with more than 500 individuals and groups in N. America, Asia, and Europe since 1995.



Queries are welcome.

Our team is headed by A. Spaice. Contact A. through this form:

Panel 3



[Update October 28, 2016]


WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME you struck up conversation with a total stranger, and found out something really cool about them and, in the process, about yourself, too? When was the last time you looked at another person, a stranger, like, really? Eye to eye, face to face. ‘You’re here, like me, in this world. Let’s converse?’

Or, while we’re on this subject, when did you last go out of your comfort zone to get lost in the sea of real-life conversation that wasn’t set up digitally first? As one guest for the next ‘N’ event put it, ‘You are not a robot. You are not your schedule. You are a human being. Be bold and pick a date and show up!’ But… it’s so hard now, isn’t it? Go to a thing and you’ll wonder who else will be there, or if you should even bother, or what might pop up instead. Or… something worse…

Since when did real life become so intense?

Why did it become strange to just smile and say ‘hi?

I was wondering all of this and sitting in agitated angst, that’s how it all started.

Dreaming up ‘N’. This might seem rather random. I’m sure it does, come to think of it.

People have told me that it’s weird, but then, when they start reading, they kind of say, ‘Ohhhh….’

Then we start really talking.

More than 600 invitations so far to people in Phnom Penh, Bangkok, Copenhagen, London, Hanoi, Bologna, and Portland, Ore. It’s a work in progress, for sure. Want to know more?

Click the ‘N’…




Panel 5


THANK YOU for visiting this page.

Design Kompany has been a work-in-progress since we formed loosely in 1994 and made ourselves an LLC a decade later. Since then, we’ve been getting to know more people, around the world, in very different settings and through a wide range of projects. We are now consulting in design thinking in Phnom Penh, as well as innovation spacemaking. What these things mean is that we are doing the work that we like to call ‘N+1,’ which involves making it simpler to take small steps, out into the unknown. Which, of course, is where the edges are. And beyond the edges, the gems.

Learn. Grow. Discover. And meet new and different others, with us this year in 2017. We will be based in Phnom Penh to host S P A C E Phnom Penh along with the people we have invited to collaborate with us through the informal network of Design Phnom Penh. We’re also going to make online salons, yes you read that right, using the techniques that we’ve found working best with our projects that invite new people to meet and talk asynchronously, across time and distance. It’s been a lot of fun, so far in tests in small groups, and we are moving into a different space. Discovering our footing. Making strides.

Here’s what you can expect from DK in 2017


  • BUILDING THE N+1 COMMUNITY. DK aims to design and create more and better spaces for real-life conversations, and for online dialogues. To publish our 7-point checklist ‘On the Quality of Space.’ So much to talk about. Patrons can take part in the multi-timezone, asynchronous online forums, too. (See ‘For patrons’ link at DesignKompany.com.) Sustain the work to cultivate, nurture, and engage with the online communities meeting and learning, together, in virtual and real-life spaces.
  • INSTALLATIONS. Sometimes I’ll dream up a conversation salon with a wacky topic, like ‘BEAUTY: What is it, who gets to decide?’ Or the international conversation salon, ‘16N’.
  • WHITE PAPERS. Help DK polish and share some of our best spacemaking research. Like the essay ‘On the Nature of Noteworthiness,’ one of the longer-form works coming out of 16N.
  • S P A C E. More than anything, DK’s work since 2005 has been to create spaces for new and different others to connect in real life. To meet people with whom paths would never have crossed, be it because of social or economic class differences, or simply the fact that it’s easier to live in a bubble or a silo than to go out of the box and mix with people we don’t know. It’s an important time, and a ripe time, to keep going with this work. Now that DK has been based in Phnom Penh for three years, a few people are showing interest in teaming to make new things. Or build on old things. DK wants to team with bloggers, artists, writers, designers, filmmakers, and more, who are right here, making and doing. People who’ve expressed interest in collaborating on literary and design projects.
  • THE REST. And ____________________________. To be determined, based on what we learn, and whom we meet, next.

To the journeys!

A. Spaice

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