Maria Bates

Empowering communities through collaborative design


Maria Bates

Brand Director & Strategist – Deakin Motion Lab
Research Fellow – Deakin Motion Lab

Research and Experience
Maria Bates has a background in communication design, built environment, interactive storytelling, and functional object design. She lectures in the Bachelor of Design at Deakin University, specializing in branding, strategic design, interactive design collaboration, and design activism. Her research focuses on social design and design anthropology to empower communities recovering from trauma through visual and interactive storytelling. Maria regularly partners with not-for-profit organizations to solve issues they face through an interdisciplinary and collaborative approach. She received a Deakin University Vice-Chancellor’s Award in 2019 for her contribution to the communication campaign for the Alcohol Culture Change Project. This project received the UniSport Australia Award for Community Leadership and was a finalist for the 2019 VicHealth Awards.


strategic design, design anthropology, brand identity, collaborative design, interactive storytelling, design activism, social design