Design Operations


Josh Silverman is a designer, serial entrepreneur, educator, lifelong learner, and an optimist. In 1997, he founded Schwadesign, a holocratic network of collaborators in all manner of design and execution, where he curated client teams of 2 to 25 people. Over 18 years, clients included MIT, Harvard Medical School, Brown University, the City of Providence, RI, the City of Bethesda, Maryland, non-profits such as The Friends of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Justice Resource Institute, and start-ups such as Buildium, Trinity Pharma, and many others. His work has been recognized in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Recode, The Boston Globe, Print,, and more.



Between 2013 and 2015 he consulted with startups on their design and strategy. In 2015 he was part of the starting team at IBM’s Cloud Garage San Francisco. Currently, he is Twitter’s first Design Producer in Product Design Operations. There, he facilitates weekly design critiques, launched a monthly speaker series, publishes the Design & Research blog, supports the product design system, and generally – and specifically! – connects dots across teams.



In his career so far, he is most proud of the network effects of running his first business within a community that was so well connected, it led to lots more cross-pollination than he ever could have imagined. He is most excited when he wakes up before his alarm, which is most days.


  • #innovation
  • #creative
  • #thinking
  • #disruptive
  • #mindset
15:30 - 17:00
Innovation Summit - 15 May

Then, Now, Next: The Evolution of the Design Business

This talk traces the path and (re)configuration of design teams through distinct eras of practice, unpacks the benefits and opportunities within each model, and draws a parallel with the types of work being delivered. Yet through it all, essential challenges persist. This talk will provide tools and techniques for getting the fundamentals right, and close with a few hypotheses about the opportunity for Bucharest’s innovative future.

Takeaways include:
-Minimum viable business models with methods to embed design from the beginning
-Frameworks and rubrics for building and maintaining high-performing teams
-Tips for diagnosing and solving problems at The People Layer