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Matt Mayfield

Associate Dean, Associate Professor of Business Strategy, & MDes/MDM Program Director

Matt Mayfield

“Design is a field in flux. That flux gives you opportunity.”


Matt Mayfield is Associate Dean of Academics and Administration at the Institute of Design and Director of the Master of Design and Master of Design Methods graduate programs. His applied research extends across the domains of design, consumer behavior, product and service strategy, and computing technology for Fortune 500 companies.

As a consultant, developer, and educator, Matt has identified and shaped compelling product and service opportunities in industries including wireless communication, medical products, housewares, consumer electronics, fast food, and air travel. Through an emphasis on multidisciplinary insight, repeatable processes, and a bias towards action, Matt has made sense of market spaces and helped organizations envision and evaluate potential futures. He has a bachelor of science degree in industrial and product design from ID and a master of science in computer science from the University of Chicago.

Activities at ID

Matt has taught at the Institute of Design since 2001, moving from adjunct faculty (2001–10) to Associate Professor. Matt also became the Assistant Dean of Academics (2012–17) and moved to Visiting Assistant Professor (2010) to Associate Dean of Academics and Administration (2017–present). He has developed and taught courses at ID in product and portfolio planning, contextual design research, and computer-aided design processes. He also leads all curriculum development with the full-time faculty of ID. His long-term research interests revolve around understanding the impact of computing technologies on decision making for design and business. He continues to consult with companies and universities on navigating the complexities of today’s markets to inform future product and service innovation.

Industry Experience

Before joining ID, Matt held several design consultancy and leadership positions. At Motorola (2001–2009), among other responsibilities he directed the company’s first advanced user-centered market exploration team, among other responsibilities. Matt also lead the development and management of the early product identification and definition process for the global CDMA mobile devices portfolio. While at Insight Product Development (1999–2001), Matt also served as Director of Consumer Research, and at Doblin Group (1993–1999) he was responsible for project research and concept ideation, developing key internal management tools, team spaces, and process documents to improve capabilities across the firm.

Speaking and Publishing

In 2015, Matt was awarded a Coleman Foundation Entrepreneurship Faulty Fellow Research Grant. His invited speaking roles and panel sessions include the “Design-Driven Product Line Management” (IEEE—Tsinghua International Design Management Symposium, (2013); “Decision Making in Product Portfolio Planning” (IDK, Hong Kong Design Centre, 2013); and “Framing for Innovation” (Godrej Industries Executive Series, India, 2013).


Mayfield, Matthew, and Stan Ruecker. 2013. “Strategy Simulation in Design: The Role of Simulation in Exploring Both Business & Design Decisions.” Presentation for 5th International Congress of International Associations of Societies of Design Research (IASDR).

Mayfield, Matt. 2012. “Battling the Demons of Complexity: Design Thinking in a Business Context.” DMI Review online.

Mayfield, Matthew, and Jooyun Melanie Joh. 2009. “The Discipline of Product Discovery: Identifying Breakthrough Business Opportunities.” Journal of Business Strategy 30 (2/3).

Related Patents

Mayfield, Matthew. Intravenous bag labeling system. US Patent 20040225252, filed June 14, 2002, and issued November 11, 2004.

Mayfield, Matthew. System and method for operating an infusion pump. US Patent 20150272828, filed April 1, 2015, and issued October 1, 2015.