A cognitive psychologist, Location Director, founder of IDEO Chicago’s User Research Group, and senior thought-leader in the company’s Health & Wellness domain, Amy Schwartz has over 25 years of professional experience in research, design, and innovation – 14 of them at IDEO. Working for a diverse set of clients—from small, not-for-profit start-ups to industry leaders like Baxter, Medtronic, Abbott, and Geisinger—Amy has contributed her innovative research methodologies and human insights to award-winning projects ranging from the design of surgical instruments and consumer health products to adherence strategies for the treatment of chronic illnesses, new services for retail-based health clinics, and the design of a medical simulation center for a major medical school. She excels in helping clients frame problems in new ways to inspire innovative design solutions.
Because Amy has worked closely with everyone from consumers, patients and their families, providers and their care teams, pharmacists, pharmaceutical companies, and payers, she has an empathic, holistic understanding of the entire modern healthcare ecosystem and the needs, desires, fears, and real- life contexts of a multitude of stakeholders. Amy’s current challenge: how to bring human-centered design-thinking to big, systemic health and wellness problems in the era of healthcare reform.
An engaging speaker, Amy has presented strategies for transforming healthcare and empowering both patients and care teams to the IHI Forum, ESOMAR Global Healthcare Conference, and AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting. She has also lectured on design research, health trends, and behavior change and adherence at Northwestern University, the University of Michigan, and the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation. Amy holds a PhD degree in cognitive psychology from Yale University and a BA in psychology from Columbia University.