About Mia Scharphie


Hey there!

Mia Scharphie is now running Creative Agency, a design and research consultancy focused on social impact, empowerment and place-based change. Visit the site for Mia’s most recent thinking and work.

This site is no longer being actively updated but the content and thinking on it will remain here. Thanks for visiting!


Mia Scharphie is a multidisciplinary designer, researcher and community advocate who works at the intersection of design, entrepreneurship and issues of social equity.

Passionate about the potential of design to catalyze social change, in 2012 Mia cofounded Proactive Practices, a research collaborative that identifies and publicizes emerging business models of socially entrepreneurial design. The Proactive Practices team has received grants from the National Endowment of the Arts and the University of Pennsylvania, and has spoken and run workshops across the country, empowering designers to pursue social impact work strategically. Mia recently served as the Northeastern University Architecture Department’s first fellow, investigating emerging models of innovative design practice, and she is the founder of Build Yourself+, a workshop that teaches action-based empowerment skills to women in design.

Mia’s  past clients have included the Harvard Business School and Enterprise Community Partners, and past employers have included Public Architecture, and the SWA Group. She received her master in landscape architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, and her undergraduate degree cum laude in Urban Studies from Brown University. Mia has spoken extensively, has been an invited speaker at conferences of the Association of Community Designers, Structures for Inclusion, and A Better World by Design. Mia also curates the ‘Creative Somerville Series‘ a speaker series in the city of Somerville, focused on creatives and entrepreneurs, and is the design partner for Black Trumpet, a pop up dinner club in Boston. Her writings on issues of equity in design have been published in the Christian Science Monitor and GOOD.