Design Thought Leaders

Over my working career I have been inspired by a huge number of design thought leaders and I would like to acknowledge them. On personal level my journey in design started when I met Mr. Nandu Kavalanekar while I was a college student at Baroda Fine Arts. Mr. Kavalanekar is the founder of N.A.Modelling works which is an amazing workshop that creates working prototype of product – big and small and supports programs like ISRO and other government agencies by creating working models of dams, rocket launchers etc. (not sure how much I can reveal). Mr. Kavalanekar or Nandubhai as people call him does not identify himself as a designer but as a problem solver. Interns who work with him are initiated by questioning everything from how things work, religions are formed, economies work, societies operate. There is no small or big problem. He is and will be my Guru. 

So here is the list of other Design Leaders, my other Guru(s):
1. Nandubhai Kavalanekar – who taught me – if there is a problem, it can be solved. What is your purpose in solving it?

2. Nathan Shedroff – introduced Experience Design through his blogs when I was new to the field and over the years he re-introduced the purpose of design. What can design do? – do check out his books on Design is the Problem, Making Meaning and Make it So

Dr. Deepak Kanal – he introduced teaching by story-telling. 
Jyotibhai Bhatt – I learnt to feel wonder at various experiences looking at his approach to art, learning about people and using photography as ethnographic documentation method
Raffi Minasian – introduced rhythm of life about how we experience our daily life, people and objects around us and how our relation to it shapes our behavior, work that includes solutions and innovations.

Design Thought Leaders that have inspired me that I wish I had met or can meet:
1. Buckminster Fuller
2. Dieter Rams
3. Charles & Ray Emes
4. David Kelley
5. Tim Brown
6. Bill Moggridge
7. Steve Blanc
8. Steve Jobs
9. Jonathan Ivy

I continue to get inspired by individuals who design to make our lives better, meaningful and purposeful. 

Who are your inspiring Design Leaders?