About Us


Visualizing Complex Research and Societal Issues in Novel Ways

impactmania features and connects people and programs to accelerate cultural, social, and economic impact. This is realized by visualizing research and societal issues, providing interactivity between experts in the fields and the community-at-large.

Within three years, impactmania has interviewed more than 300+ impact makers in 30+ countries and connected hundreds of people and programs. One of impactmania’s video stories was featured at the United Nations (UN). A number of impactmania’s interviewees and their work have gone on to be featured in notable media outlets, the White House, universities, and the U.S. Consulate. impactmania has a partnership with Art Design & Architecture Museum, University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) offering students entrepreneurial design-led internship programs.

“Double Bravo for the discussion meeting: I was impressed with the people who have joined up, the ones who showed up, and the ones I personally know whom you introduced at the dais. You obviously have tapped into some special energy system … keep it up … no one can do it better. You are onto something really exciting.”

— Duncan Mellichamp

Professor Emeritus, Department of Chemical Engineering and Philanthropist

The impactmania Team

Paksy Plackis-Cheng, impactmania

Paksy Plackis-Cheng, Founder | 

Paksy has covered and connected hundreds of people and projects globally. Her work has been cited in a number of international media outlets, universities, the US Consulate, and the United Nations.
As the Senior Fellow Research and Media at Art Design & Architecture Museum, University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) she leads the AD&A Museum/impactmania internship program producing entrepreneurial and interdisciplinary learning experiences.

Previously in the tech industry, she has worked in 12+ countries and speaks Cantonese, Dutch, and English. Paksy has served on half a dozen boards, including twice as the President of the Board of the Santa Barbara Symphony. She graduated from the Erasmus University, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

Jody Turner

Jody Turner | 

Jody Turner, Culture of Future, is an insight strategist and writer with a foundation in design communications. For sixteen years Turner has advised 200+ brands on project initiatives small, large, local and global in scope. Her specialty is innovating to the human experience. To date, her favorite work has been with sparks and honey NYC, TrendWatching London, IDEO San Francisco, Starbucks Seattle, Nike Portland, and Apple Silicon Valley.

Kayla Bonnin

Kayla Bonnin | 

Kayla Bonnin is a digital and communication strategist who has worked in many sectors, ranging from the California wine industry to the Archaeology Institute of America to a Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) campaign sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security. She received her BA from California State University and MA from Boston University where she dedicated her thesis to exploring and understanding the psychology and motivations of female suicide bombers.

Carla De Landri

Carla De Landri | 

Carla De Landri is an Emmy-winning journalist who has a knack for telling unique and memorable stories. Her portfolio at ABC News spans decades and her work ranges from reporting on the Gulf Wars, US political campaigns, the uprising at Tiananmen Square, and the fall of the Berlin Wall. She was the first to break a story about sexual assault at the US Air Force Academy and inhumane labor practices faced by immigrant women in clothing factories.

Carla has pursued a wider portfolio as a media and communications consultant and she has traveled widely on academic tours to India and China. For impactmania, she will take on a monthly column on media and news.

Advisory Group

Ricardo Gandour, Executive Director, Rede CBS, Brazilian Radio News Network, Brazil | Elyse A. Gonzales, Assistant Director and Curator, AD&A Museum (UC Santa Barbara) | Prof. Bruce Robertson, Director AD&A Museum (UC Santa Barbara)

AD&A Museum (UCSB) and impactmania Interns

Lizbeth Martinez | Tess Reinhardt | Joyce Tsui | Denisse Gonzalez | Nerwel Zhao | Zoe Crouzat | Haoran ‘Tyler’ Jiang | Nicollette Juchum | Madeleine Lazarovits | Marirose Meyer | Winston Braun

PhD candidates: Sophia McCabe | Virginia ‘Ginny’ Reynolds Badgett | Mary Okin | Melina Gooray

Past Global Contributors

Chelsea Catania | Kristina Van Dyke | Erika Carlos | Nastacia Schmoll | Leah Kuritzky | Melissa Walker | Chad Sykes | Victoria Herbert | Ida Storm | Joanna Lamstein | Cliff Lundberg | Sebastian Schumacher | Ilse Westerik

In The News

View all impactmania News & Media

impactmania INTERVIEWS have been cited by a number of media outlets worldwide, including many universities, the United Nations, and the US Consulate.

“impactmania interview with Robert Zimmerman, Berlin Philharmonic, was cited as a source for the report: The Berliner Philharmoniker’s Digital Forte.”

Harvard Business School

“impactmania interview with artist Barbara Caveng was cited in the IKSV report: Living Together. Fostering Cultural Pluralism Through The Arts.”

Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (IKSV)

Media Highlights

impactmania Timeline



impactmania and Neuroscience Research Institute (NRI) at UC Santa Barbara to launch collaborative project.

After an overwhelming successful Women of Impact program, impactmania starts second project and internship program with AD&A Museum, UCSB


WOI Header

Women of Impact book, museum exhibition, and presentation launched with 200+ community members and close to 30 women from the project traveled from 8 U.S. cities and 5 continents for the July 19th launch.

Pat Mitchell, first female President and CEO of PBS and Co-Director of TED Women, writes Women of Impact foreword.

impactmania partners with Art, Design & Architecture (AD&A) Museum, University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) to deliver entrepreneurial, design-led, internship program for students.


impactmania featured more than 300 original interviews with impact makers in 30 countries.

Newton Paiva University (Brazil) partners with impactmania to uncover and feature social enterprises.

impactmania’s video story The Future of Business is Responsible is also available on view at the United Nations Foundation’s website as part of the Every Woman Every Child initiative.

impactmania video story The Future of Business is Responsible was featured at the United Nations Global Compact Conference 2017.


impactmania interviewees have gone on to speak at the White House.

impactmania interviewees have gone on to be covered in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Wired, Business Insider, and American Express’s Departure Magazine.

The U.S. Consulate in Lahore, Pakistan features an impactmania interview on their social media. Two national news outlets in Pakistan publish one of our interviews.

impactmania has been cited as a source in several publications:

Harvard Business School, The Berliner Philharmoniker’s Digital Fort

Doner D/Construct, Xtrapreneurshi

Discussion Guide from UNC Journeys in Film & USC Rossier School of Education

impactmania launches at Art, Design & Architecture Museum (UCSB)

impactmania help realize a strategic alliance for Trekking for Kids and Universal Giving.


Impact X book and community event for 290 people takes place at The New Vic Theatre in Santa Barbara, California.

We matched dozens of people and projects.

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