The New York City Service Design Network chapter aims to strengthen and grow the Service Design community within the New York area. We look forward to bringing together SD academics, professionals and enthusiasts through formal and informal gatherings including panel discussions, workshops and structured happy hours throughout the year. We want to support the spread of knowledge while having an open conversation around common challenges and big wins for the SD industry and SD individuals.


NYC Community 
Our community is diverse with members within academia, agencies, and corporations. Here are just a snapshot of participant backgrounds – from academia we often see students join from Parsons and NYU; from agencies, we have had participants from Fjord, Studio Wé, Idean, The Womb, Foossa; from corporations we have participants join from Capital One, Gartner, Citibank, BNY Mellon. As we continue to host events we see continued growth in variety of groups as well as participants themselves. It has been wonderful to watch individuals come together and connect through the platform we have provided.

Local Events
In April of 2018 we started hosting events as a Meetup to gage interest. We started with a simple happy hour at a local bar and the rest is history. We typically host 1-2 events a month formatted as talks with industry leaders, panels with group discussion, facilitated speed networking, workshops and happy hours here and there. We curate content based on relevancy with what else is going on within the Service Design industry as well as within the New York City area. 

Natalie Kuhn
Natalie Kuhn - Service Designer, Strategist, Design Methods Coach

As a Manager in Service Design, Natalie guides teams through design research, synthesis, strategy, creative concepts, prototyping, and product testing. She is the lead designer on Commercial onboarding at Capital One meaning that she oversees all design work associated with streamlining the processes and products associated with bringing new clients into the Commercial Bank. She offers strategy on new ways of working to bring siloed teams together as well as improve the working culture within her day to day team. Natalie has also been heavily involved in training disciplines outside of design the benefits of building customer empathy through primary research and further how to use those insights to better develop services and products.

Kathleen Chao
Kathleen Chao - Design Strategist

With her relentless pursuit to bridge the gap in between business and design, Kathleen is now working as a Design Strategist in one of the world’s oldest financial institutions in New York. Her day-to-day job includes connecting the dots among cross-functional teams, analyzing internal operations to support product lifecycle, defining design process and measurement, and educating fellow designers on new design trends. She also leads user research efforts and organizational ecosystem initiatives. In addition to her day job and her evening job (i.e. organizing Service Design meetups in the city), she mentors Design for America students and help them apply design to make social impacts in the local community.

Antonio Cesare Iadarola
Antonio Cesare Iadarola - Ph.D. in Design, Service and Industrial Designer

Antonio practices design combining professional and academic roles. He is associate professor of industrial design and design thinking at Beijing Institute of Technology and co-leader of the Service Design professional trainings at Central Saint Martins, London. Through Studio Wé, the New York and Montreal based studio he founded in 2014 with Antonio Starnino, is active as service design consultant in the private and public sector, helping teams in both corporations and startup to redesign their work environments through co-creation of work processes and spaces. Through his engagements across industry and academia, Antonio is often involved in professional training and “socialising” service design within new professional communities of practice, this bring him and Studio Wé to constantly create tailored methodologies and programs to equip clients with service design systems and produce research on the Future of Work and how service design is evolving within organizations.

Francesco Petronelli
Francesco Petronelli - Senior Manager, Experience and Service Design

Francesco is a Senior Manager at Capital One, with focus on Experience and Service Design for B2B solutions. He lived and worked across Europe, Asia and the US, and throughout his career he has led design efforts both in agencies and in-house. During his time at frog as an Associate Director, he consulted for multiple clients in the fields of finance, healthcare and education (among others) and contributed to establishing a formal Service Design practice in North America. In his day to day work, Francesco uncovers users needs through generative research, articulates and visualises complex service experiences and process maps, prototypes product features using iterative techniques and facilitates the implementation of Service Design tools across multidisciplinary teams. Francesco is also a Service Design mentor and lecturer, coaching students and young professionals in academia and workplace programs.

David Russo
David Russo - Service Designer

David is a Service Designer with deep roots in the hospitality industry, using his skills in collaboration and engaging storytelling to consistently create meaningful solutions. He has worked in agency and in-house settings, spanning the industries of banking, food service, and the public sector. A natural mentor and coach, David regularly seeks opportunities to share his knowledge with others in both design and non-design disciplines.