Jan-Christoph Zoels is a founding partner of Experientia, where he is in charge of user experience design. In his work, Jan-Christoph Zoels focuses on people’s service experiences to support sustainable lifestyles.
Jan-Christoph takes a hands-on approach to Experientia’s design projects. As Creative Director and VP of the company, he guides the design and innovation process from ideation to experience prototyping, working directly with teams to guarantee the design quality of deliverables. He leads Experientia’s co-creation workshops and master classes with clients, helping organizations to embed design thinking and strategic design concepts within their companies.
Originally from Germany, he lived for many years in the USA, where he taught at Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), and was director of information architecture at Sapient and a senior designer at Sony Electronics. He was a co-founding member and senior associate professor at Interaction Design Institute Ivrea (IDII), where he led the ‘Applied Dreams’ initiative — collaborative innovation workshops with industry leaders such as Nokia, Alcatel, Sony, Hitachi, Mattel, Orange, Fiat and Telecom Italia. He currently holds four patents.
Jan-Christoph has presented as a keynote speaker at Aedes Berlin, Banff’s New Media Institute, BECC in Washington, Bloomberg Media Futures in London, BMW’s Marketing Innovation Lab Forum in Munich, China Productivity Center in Taipei, DPPI in Milano, IIID in Vienna, Lift in Geneva, MediaLab Prado in Madrid, Mobile Nation in Toronto, UX conference in Lugano and at multiple design colleges.
He received his master’s degrees in Industrial Design from RISD, Providence, USA, and Academy for Art and Design in Berlin, Germany. He has taught at RISD, the Jan Van Eyck Academy (Maastricht, Netherlands), at Samsung’s Innovative Design Laboratory (Seoul, Korea), CIID Copenhagen, and Domus Academy, Milan.
With Jan-Christoph as design lead, Experientia won the Italian National Award for Innovation in Service Design as well as the Holcim Award for Sustainable Construction for the design of a sustainable building block using low carbon emission construction techniques in Helsinki’s former docklands (www.low2no.org). His leadership has seen Experientia excel on behavioral change initiatives, stakeholder engagement, participatory design processes and sustainable demand management solutions.
Additional awards include: 2014 ADI Index award – UniCredit ATM interface design 2013 Nordic Built, Finland – Joint 2nd place 2011 Italian national award for innovation in service design – Low2No
2011 Holcim Acknowledgement Awards Europe – design of SITRA Headquarter building for Low2No carbon neutral district in Helsinki 2010 Fredericia C Denmark – finalist: Arup, Effekt and Experientia 2009 Low2No Helsinki -1st place: Arup, Sauerbruch Hutton and Experientia – sustainable development design competition for low2no carbon emissions block in Helsinki Harbor