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Photo of Dr. Dan Formosa

Dr. Dan Formosa

Founding Faculty


As a designer Dan Formosa has developed products and services in a wide variety of categories. With his undergraduate degree in product design and a doctorate in ergonomics and biomechanics, he focuses on ways design can improve our lives. Doing this requires that we first understand people.


Using this approach he has found ways, simply through design, to increase fuel efficiency in automobiles, improve drug compliance and health, and make our day-to-day lives just a little easier.


Starting his career Dan was a member of the team that design IBM’s first personal computer (a junior member, he’ll remind you). In 1980 he helped establish Smart Design, dedicated to exploring ways in which design can positively impact people’s lives.


He is the recipient of numerous design awards over the years. Dan’s work is included in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. In 2010, on behalf of Smart Design, he received the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award. Also that year he helped establish the Masters in Branding program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City – the first program of its kind anywhere, dedicated to the rapidly changing roles of brands. In 2012 Dan received IxDA’s first annual Interaction Award. He also co-authored the bestselling book Baseball Field Guide, clearly explaining the complex rules of Major League Baseball.


In addition to consulting for companies globally, Dan frequently writes and lectures on various aspects of design, the future of design, and the human experience.

The curriculum for The Masters in Branding Program allows students to create frameworks to guide brand, design and business development, critically evaluate brand, business, marketing and design strategies and Master the intellectual link between leadership and creativity. Learn more...


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Debbie Millman
Chair, Co-founder


Emily Weiland

Studio Manager


Steven Heller
Co-founder, Faculty Advisor