Denver, Colorado, United States

Image of Denver's nighttime city skyline

Saturday February 18th, 2017

World Information Architecture Day is an annual celebration of the practice, growth, and evolution of Information Architecture. 2017 will mark the second annual Denver celebration of World IA Day, and we'd love for you to join us for this free event!


World IA Day Denver is a full day of talks, discussions, and opportunities to get to know the local information architecture community. Whether or not you have IA in your title, if you're interested in learning more about information architecture, you won't want to miss this free event!

Read on for more details about what the event will entail! You can follow us on Twitter, too, for updates as the day approaches!


World IA Day doesn't cost anything, but we do ask people to register so we can gauge what size of an audience to plan for. Register for the event here!


World IA Day is held all across the globe on Saturday, February 18th. The Denver event will run from 9:00 to 4:30pm in downtown Denver at the EffectiveUI offices, followed by an informal community meet up for anyone who wants to keep the IA goodness going.


EffectiveUI Offices
2162 Market St, Denver, CO 80205, USA

Although the office doesn't have public parking available, there are pretty good options for public transit and pay parking nearby. 

Program Schedule
9:00 AM -
Venue Opens
9:20 AM - 9:30 AM
Welcome + Opening Remarks

Shelley Cook, lead of the local World IA Day team, will welcome you and introduce the event. 

9:30 AM - 10:15 AM
­A Service Design Approach to Choreographing Processes and Information – Marc Mueller

Today, most companies are recognizing the importance of providing pleasant, helpful, and seamless experiences to their customers. Many initiatives focus on the customers’ point of view in an attempt to optimize the user journey. Often times, these initiatives fail to reach their full potential due their one-sidedness, disregarding the need for the (re-)alignment of internal structures and processes in order to support these improved customer experiences.  

This talk gives an introduction to tools from service design that help align the internal processes and information exchanges to properly support a seamless user experience. This talk explains exercises to map the existing ecosystem of support services and backstage systems and identify relationships between different stakeholders. In order to define parameters that help shape information structures for often non-linear experiences, it introduces the principles of world-building, as an extension to the more rigid approach of linear storytelling.

10:15 AM - 11:00 AM
Backstage: How invisible architecture contributes to a ballet dancer’s success – Alicia Raciti

When we think of ballet, we are usually thinking of art and for some people, an opportunity to catch a nap. The world of ballet is architected to allow the dancer to focus fully on their craft instead of the moments, or movement, throughout their day. The nested structure of the day’s activities create an invisible architecture which the dancer relies on for their health and the advancement of their skill and craft.

This invisible architecture has worked so well for the dancers and companies, that it has been applied to all 6 major ballet methods used throughout the world. We will examine what that architecture is and how it has contributed to the success of the dancers.


  • Architecture can contribute to the success of an individual or a group
  • A good architecture will be copied and used universally
  • Audience receives a new perspective on ballet
11:00 AM - 11:15 AM
Coffee & Snack Break
11:15 AM - 12:00 PM
How Card Sorting Helps You Build People-Centric IA – Natalia Klishina

Anyone who wants to get started in (or get better at) the art and science that is Information Architecture needs to master card sorting. Card sorting sessions, which ask participants to organize topics into categories and name those categories, enable you to creature structures that makes sense to actual users — not just to you or your stakeholder. This talk will cover card sorting best practices, tools you can use for card sorting, the pros and cons of online vs. in-person card sorting, and some lessons I've learned along the way in my 5 years of conducting these exercises for a variety of B2B and B2C clients.

12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Lunch Break

Take a break and grab some lunch from one of the restaurants in the neighborhood. 

1:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Giveaways from our Global Sponsors

Make sure you're back on time from lunch, for your chance to win a gift from one of the Global World IA Day sponsors!

1:45 PM - 2:30 PM
Developing UX and IA Strategies – Dean Rizzuto

Gathering and organizing UX and IA research into a cohesive document that can be shared with other team members can be challenging. We’ll discuss the research and the components that make up a UX / IA Strategy and how they can be organized and presented to team members.

2:30 PM - 2:45 PM
Snack break
2:45 PM - 3:15 PM
Goodbye Personas. Hello User Roles. – John McRee

Now that the concept of Customer Personas has been co-opted and diluted by nearly everyone that has sat in a 45-minute talk about Design Thinking, we as designers and information architects must ask ourselves, "Do we really NEED Personas anymore?" I say no. Let's either get back to basics or take personas to the next level. Let's make them useful again by applying the fundamental principles of User Roles in order to answer the most important design questions.

This session will cover the fundamental questions that must be answered to create efficient and powerful User Roles. We will also discuss how these might be combined with Personas to create a truly comprehensive understanding of customer goals and needs.

3:15 PM - 3:45 PM
No persona? No product. – Janna Moreau

When you're starting a new project it's an exciting experience, it’s a fresh new canvas with infinite possibilities. You start with what seems like an endless amount of questions and ideas going through your head. What valuable features can we add? Remember that unique interaction design we saw on a blog article, what if we used that somehow? How can we develop a great experience for the user, one that will make them eager to come back?

These are all the fun and exciting questions that come with any new project and before getting too ahead of yourself, an important question you should be asking is, who exactly are we building this product for?

Understanding your users will help guide you to build a product or service that feels as if it was made for them. Having the empathy to be able to get into your user's head will help educate you on the different ways they consume information, guiding you through the different steps of designing your product's information architecture.

A technique to create a reliable and realistic representation of those users are the creation of User Personas. Together we will dive deeper into what personas are, why you need them to create a user-centered product, how they help determine your information architecture, and tips on how to create them!

3:45 PM - 4:15 PM
Discussion Groups: Perspectives on Personas

We'll break into groups to talk about the different perspectives we've just heard on personas, and discuss how we use them in our own work. 

4:15 PM - 4:30 PM
Closing Remarks

We'll wrap up with a quick recap of the day and our thanks for coming out to talk IA!

4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Informal IA Happy Hour

Join your fellow attendees and head out to one of the local cafes or breweries to keep the IA fun flowing. 

Speakers & Presenters
Marc Mueller
Marc Mueller
User Experience Architect
Universal Mind

Marc Mueller works as a user experience architect for Universal Mind, a digital agency in Denver, CO. His work centers on helping companies successfully transform their businesses to meet the needs of increasingly digital markets and customer demands. Holding a graduate degree in design from SCAD, he applies his training in design methodologies and design thinking to business contexts, conducting research and using visual tools to communicate findings and shape ideas and strategies. 

Alicia Raciti
Alicia Raciti
Service Designer
Charter Communications

Alicia Raciti is a service designer at Charter Communications. She transitioned from music school student to UX designer in the middle of her collegiate career. She is currently working on overhauling the customer experience for enterprise clients at Charter and organizing UX courses for Girl Develop It Boulder/Denver. You can regularly find her dancing around the hallways or at her desk. Her thoughts can be found on Twitter as @acr523.

Natalia Klishina
Natalia Klishina
Content & UX Strategist
Faction Media

Natalia Klishina is a Content & UX Strategist at Faction Media, a Denver-based agency where she continually challenges her peers to build more meaningful relationships with prospective customers by better understanding the real human beings behind every connection. In her 5+ years at Faction, Natalia has worked on a number of award-winning website projects, demand generation campaigns, and re-brands for multi-billion dollar corporations — not to mention hundreds of smaller projects.

Before Faction, Natalia managed marketing for a successful cloud telephony startup in Los Angeles and worked as a freelance marketing consultant. In her spare time, Natalia loves to cook, search out hidden restaurants, hang out with her cat Meatball, and travel.

Dean Rizzuto
Dean Rizzuto
Senior UX Strategist
Integer Digital

Dean Rizzuto has 15+ years of experience in shaping, communicating and developing UX Strategies for large brands and digital products across diverse industries.

Dean has a comprehensive digital background as a strategist, developer, and designer. He’s passionate about creating innovative, measurable strategies and user experiences for all user interaction points within the digital ecosystem – including web, mobile, social, search, email.

Dean is currently a Senior UX Strategist for the Integer Digital group, where he leads UX Strategy, Vision and Design efforts on key digital projects (websites, eCommerce, social, mobile apps, etc.) for Integer clients. 

John McRee
John McRee
Senior Experience Architect
Universal Mind

John has been designing user experiences since 1999. Acquiring and mastering user-centered design (UCD) methodologies along the way, he has designed Web sites, CD-ROM-based experiences, shrink-wrapped desktop software and mobile applications.

In his role as a Senior Experience Architect at Universal Mind, John specializes in design process management, digital strategy, user research, information architecture and interaction design. He has had the pleasure of working with telecommunications organizations, desktop publishing companies, financial institutions, network security agencies and companies within a variety of other verticals.

When John isn’t working, he can be found spending time with his son, snowboarding, playing the banjo, riding his motorcycle, or backpacking his way across Colorado.

Janna Moreau
Janna Moreau
Web/UX Designer

Janna Moreau is a web/UX designer at newmedia. Working with a larger company, Janna has the opportunity to work in a vast range of industries; ranging from fashion, non-profits, and construction. This has been a great way to expand on her collaborative and strategic approach to ensure each project has a unique experience.

Janna started her career in graphic design where she learned about brand identity and how something as simple as a brand mark can build trust with their users. From graphic design, she started to focus her knowledge towards web design where she could really make a difference.

Janna loves working with startup companies where she uses her strategic UX thinking to help new businesses narrow down their business objectives and help accomplish their online goals. On her free time, Janna enjoys going up to the mountains with her loving boyfriend and Bernese Mountain Dog.

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