Human behavior is strongly guided by design, aesthetics, feel, experience, etc. I am very interested in how designing learning environments (schools, classrooms, lessons, assessments) directs student and teacher behavior. I always say to teachers that lessons should be designed in a such a way that every student has to participate, there is no way to avoid being part of the learning. Here is a great video to the concept of good design driving good behavior.
As a technologist people often tell me how incredible they think iPads are. I agree, they are incredible. Then they ask if iPads will replace all computers. I usually say no, touchscreens are not the answer, gesture and voice-based computers are - these folks are helping my futurist predictions ring a little more true. It is nice to be right, for a moment.
Kiran Bir Sethi's TED talk about empowering young people to change their local community was beyond inspiring. Her kids changed the town they lived in. She wrote up the strategy, translated it into 8 languages, and distributed it all around India. The result? Over 40,000 schools working for real change all around India.
For those who don't think that educational change can scale, Kiran Bir Sethi shows you that it indeed can. Want your school to be a part of this? Join the Design for Change contest.
Thanks to TEDxNYED for bringing this video to my awareness.
This interactive article by the New York Times shows how systems are sometimes more than enough to help people make good choices, it doesn't always have to be about education. In this case they study school lunch line design and healthy eating.
This example screams of the "shaping the path" concept from the book Switch by the Heath Brothers. If you are trying to implement change (personal or professional) in any way, you must read this book!