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Kelly Costello

Kelly is the CEO of Panorama Innovation, a human-centered design and innovation firm. With over two decades of experience leveraging user research to develop new products, services and businesses, Kelly Costello helps companies build innovation capabilities, identify opportunities and informed by deep consumer insight. She has worked with a wide variety of industries including product manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, healthcare providers, financial services and not-for-profit institutions. 

As an active speaker and educator, Kelly currently teaches at the Institute of Design (IIT) and CEDIM in Mexico. She coaches teams for Design for America at Northwestern University and has taught classes at the School of the Art Institute, the Executive MBA program at Notre Dame, Bowling Green State University and SACI in Florence, Italy. She has presented for numerous professional organizations including the AIGA, MRA, EPIC, and the Design Research Conference at IIT. She holds a Master of Design from the Institute of Design at IIT in Chicago.

The importance of user research: how insight drives innovation and the struggle to keep it alive throughout the design process.

What makes an insight worthy of action? How do we ensure that what we create truly addresses the needs of our end users?

These are big questions, and it can be difficult to keep them alive as the conflicting goals of addressing client’s needs, budget, and strategic goals, and what is relevant in the marketplace may appear irreconcilably disassociated with the original insights gathered from the field. This talk follows a social innovation project from early research findings through to a pilot launch in the marketplace, and discusses some of the ups, downs, and lessons learned from that journey.