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Anijo Mathew, PhD

Anijo Punnen Mathew is an Associate Professor at the Institute of Design at IllinoisTech, where his research looks at evaluating new semantic appropriations of place as enabled by technology and media convergence.

He is also Founder and Chief Experience Officer at Vamonde, a Chicago startup focused on empowering a network of cultural partners to create highly curated hyper-local narratives for the cultural traveler.  Anijo has a PhD in Computing from the Open University in the U.K.; Master of Design Studies (MDesS) from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design; and a professional Bachelor of Architecture (BArch) from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra, Ranchi (India).

Anijo has over 15 years of experience in strategy and design; and has consulted for the City of Chicago, Hyatt, Hong Kong Design Centre, Singapore Urban Redevelopment Authority/Singapore River One, Chicago Tribune, Accenture, Motorola Mobility, Gensler, Godrej & Boyce, Chicago Loop Alliance, and Chicago Architecture Foundation.

Reframing Innovation: how design-led initiatives can lead to disruptive impact 

Conceiving and implementing a truly disruptive idea is no easy task; complexities associated with number of stakeholders, scales of implementation, and outdated impact models can deter anyone from approaching such problems. Yet today, the infrastructural, technological, and economic climate is ripe for even small teams to tackle complex problems with very limited resources.

In this keynote session, Professor Anijo Mathew from the Institute of Design will discuss how design-led initiatives can change the direction of innovation projects. Pulling from 10 years of experience in corporate, non-profit, and social contexts, he will show how both small and large organizations around the world have reframed problems from a human-centered perspective to achieve truly disruptive impact.