SANS(三思)is a studio for research, design, and implementation based in Shenzhen, China.

Our focus is in developing methods and experiences for changing cities.

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Founded in 2010 by Yijing Xu (1984 - Shanghai, China) and Neill Mclean Gaddes (1983 - Te Aroha, New Zealand) the studio operates at the intersection of culture, community, and commerce, realising numerous high profile projects and events over the past decade.

SANS三思 service extends from early stage positioning and alignment through to implementation, programming, and evaluation. We work with a view to long term collaboration, ensuring our work creates maximum possible value for both clients and communities.




Insight generation from qualitative and quantitative data research.

- Ethnographic Research

- Community/Stakeholder Workshops

- Systems Analysis

- Trends and Forecasting

- Reports & White Papers

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Making insights actionable through the co-creation of solutions.

- Strategic Planning

- Stakeholder Co-Design

- Positioning

- Bidding/Funding Proposals

- Interior & Experience Design

- Landscape Design

- Visual Identity & Graphic Design

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Alignment, promotion, and operation through guides (internal), stories (external), and partnerships.

- Content Production

- Curation

- Exhibition Design & Implementation

- Publication Design & Production

- Event Management

- Strategic Partnerships



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Projects & Partners

Brewery for Cultural Production / Brownfield Cultural Development / Luohu Shenzhen (GDH Holdings Ltd)

The Global School / Program Development (Beijing-based International Think Tank - Bside Design) 

Placing Shangsha / Shenzhen Urban Village Revitalisation (UABB2017 & Urbanus)

Shangwei Mechanism / Shenzhen Urban Village Revitalisation (UABB2017 & Future+)

Hong Kong International Flower Show / Narrative and Landscape Design (Shenzhen Urban Management Bureau)

CITIC PORT / Strategic Planning & Project Positioning (CITIC Publishing Group)

Village Reset / Rural Revitalisation Qingpu, Shanghai (Design Venture Forward - DVF)

Kwan Yen Project / Yantai Old Town Revitalisation (China Chuang Yuan 中国创源)

Dashilar Project / Beijing Hutong Revitalisation: Strategic Planning & Implementation (Guang'An Holdings Ltd & Xicheng District Government)

Shanzhai City / Founding Team: Social Impact Measurement & Blockchain Technology (SZC Holdings HK/SZ/SF)

Beijing Design Week: Design Hop Dashilar Alley / Curation, Exhibition Design & Operation (Guang'An Holdings & Beijing Gehua Culture Development Group)

Baitasi Remade / Beijing Hutong Revitalisation: Program Development & Community Engagement (Beijing Huarong Jinying Group & Beijing Gehua Culture Development Group)

Venice Architecture Biennale 2016: ACC: China House Vision / Visual Identity (Beijing Gehua Culture Development Group)

GSAPP Studio X Baitasi / Data, Insight, Value Co-creation Workshop (Studio X, Columbia University)

GSAPP Studio X Dashilar: Housing In-between / Exhibition, Symposium & Workshop (Studio X, Columbia University)

Venice Architecture Biennale 2014: Across Chinese Cities / Visual Identity & Content Creation (Beijing Gehua Culture Development Group)

Design-in-Progress / Exhibition Design & Content Creation (Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art - CGCCA, Manchester)

Bishan Project / Exhibition Design and Production (Auckland Triennial 2013)

Bishan Harvestival & Yixian International Photo Festival / Exhibition Design and Production

Get it Louder 2010 / Exhibition Design & Production (Modern Media Co., Ltd)

UABB (Urbanism and Architecture Bi-City Biennale) Shenzhen and Hong Kong 2009 / Assistant to the Chief Curator