An introduction to leading profound social, environmental and personal transformation.
Ela is an Adjunct Professor teaching User-Oriented Collaborative Design and Design Nature at Olin. Ela is passionate about the capacity of human-centered design and design thinking to empower people to create their lives, organizations, offerings, community and world. She is currently a Content Guide coaching teams and clients in Design Research and Strategy at IDEO. Whenever possible her work is focused on positive change, including work around education, elderly independence, diet and diabetes for clients like Eli Lilly, PepsiCo, GSK and GM. She has steeped deeply in the people and process of design in thirteen years at IDEO. Throughout this time she has worked to share design thinking with professionals and young people by leading collaborative "transformation" projects, workshops, and courses at IDEO as well as with organizations including MIT/Sloan, Olin, Harvard, the Eileen Fisher Leadership Institute, and the International Development Design Summit.
With depth in both design research and engineering, Ela leads projects through front-end user research, opportunity synthesis, concept development, and prototyping. Her work has spanned products, services, packaging, and merchandising including the consumer health, financial, telecommunication, consumer electronics, pet, and food & beverage industries. She has worked in both developed and developing markets, and with both for-profit and non-profit organizations. As a research assistant in the MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory Haptics Group, she developed a force-feedback laparoscopic surgery simulator that been patented and is on display at the MIT museum. In late fall 2013, Ela will be transitioning into independent coaching and consulting in human-centered design thinking.
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