Jaan is an amazing, passionate guy who understands the intersection of branding, design and user experience better than anyone else I’ve met.
— Andy McLoughlin Co-founder Huddle, Partner Uncork Capital

Human Centred Design for Cities & Services — A quick introduction

Places affect what we do, how we do it and how we feel about our activities and interactions. Approaching places, aka cities, and services from a human centred perspective delivers the deeper insights we need to create substantially better services. Those that truly matter.

Understanding the context in which a place exists starts with understanding the people who are its inhabitants. Getting a feel for all the daily rituals, done knowingly or cheerily or even sleepily on auto-pilot, helps us understand the human scale of a place.

I have had the opportunity to work with some of the world’s leading brands together with brilliant agencies and product companies across Europe, North America and Asia (as well as built their global design teams!). The most successful of those brand and client collaborations have several things in common, including a deep understanding of the contexts and the places in which the result of our co-created work would be relevant to people, to us, humans. In other words, understanding cities mattered.

My professional roots are firmly planted in the world of User Experience design. An empathetic human centred approach comes naturally to me. Add to this my belief that clarity and simplicity are the only "rules" we should follow as they resonate on a fundamental level with us human beings. Bringing this mindset to complex challenges, i.e. cities and services (whether the latter is delivered through a device or for us to physically interact with) makes the challenges manageable and the opportunities actionable. Understand people, build for people.

Orvet: Listening is at the heart of design. And it goes both ways. There has to be a dialogue [for an understanding to develop].
— Quoted in the LSC book by Toiminen, Nevanlinna, Sarvas
  Delivering the keynote on behalf of Boris Design Studio at Metta during Hong Kong’s Business of Design Week. Photo by    Vicky Lo    ⇢

Delivering the keynote on behalf of Boris Design Studio at Metta during Hong Kong’s Business of Design Week. Photo by Vicky Lo

 Currently

Thrilled to be part of the team at M ⇢ by Volvo Car Mobility, working with CEO Bodil Eriksson and the team to build a mobility service that enables people to “Move Freely”. My focus is of course human centred cities and services, where I work directly with the elected leadership of progressive cities.

I am also a partner to Boris Design Studio, one of Hong Kong’s leading design agencies.

Speaker, guest lecturer and moderator at events and institutions including KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Berghs School of Communication, XDesign Stockholm, Cotalk by Codesign, and Almedalen.

Founding Editor of print title 96°.

Swedish, formerly based in San Francisco and London with a stint in Washington D.C. Now living in Stockholm. Regularly in Hong Kong and Singapore.

My co-authored book State of Mind at Work is now available to order ⇢.

  With my ‘State of Mind at Work’ co-author and collaborator Tommie Cau. Photo by    Ann Jonasson   ⇢

With my ‘State of Mind at Work’ co-author and collaborator Tommie Cau. Photo by Ann Jonasson

Recently 

Global Head of Design for the Futurice agency (Berlin, Helsinki, London, Munich, Oslo, Stockholm, Tampere) where I also did strategic client work, and held a seat on the group's managing Council. Futurice’s clients include BMW, E.ON, Electrolux, Halebop, Plan International, Kesko, Allianz, Samsung and Fira.

International Head of Creative at Comprend [Stockholm, London, Lisbon + Milan] (2014-2016). Developed award-winning UX & Design team. Established human centered design methodology with an emphasis on research and collaboration. Clients included European industry leaders BBVA, Grant Thornton, SEB Bank, Electrolux, William Hill. 

Global Head of Creative at Nansen [Stockholm, Chicago, London, New York, Washington D.C.] (2011-2013). Built and coached the international UX and design teams, setting the overall creative direction for the agency. Clients included Electrolux, Coop, Reyes Beverage Group, Vårdförbundet and Aggro Pekuliar

  On the "Can enterprise apps ever be beautiful?" panel at MobileBeat by VentureBeat in San Francisco. Photo by    Michael O'Donnell    ⇢

On the "Can enterprise apps ever be beautiful?" panel at MobileBeat by VentureBeat in San Francisco. Photo by Michael O'Donnell

UX & Design Director at cloud collaboration leader Huddle (2010-2011) in San Francisco, Telegraph Tech Start-up 100 Award winner. Inaugural RHoK ⇢ judge with founding partners NASA, The World Bank, Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft.

Founding Editor of Paper Light Magazine together with Frida Vega Salomonsson.

  On a Skype call with Nansen's Client Services Director Charlotta Lorentz. Photo by David Kästel.

On a Skype call with Nansen's Client Services Director Charlotta Lorentz. Photo by David Kästel.

Co-founder at Skrivr and OpenTypography. Advisor at  Weld ⇢ and MND Labs. Co-author of 'Noded - The untouchable business', listed by Internetworld magazine with Twitter, Apple and Nintendo Wii as ideas and companies that “got it right” and are leading the way to the future.

In 2008 coined the term Functional Creativity to explain how successful digital projects combine strategy, concept development, function and UX:

Functional is easy to understand and helps us get things done. A function has value. Creativity solves problems, it has the power to inspire, guide and evolve.

 

Before 

Spray, Marieberg Interactive, SMC, Yahoo! (2003-2004), Sharpenr (2004-2010) and Stanford University CSP, JMK Stockholm University and Poppius School of Journalism alumni. Former writer, editor, photographer and columnist. 
 

Contact me via LinkedIn ⇢

...or explore how my work has been featured.

 

Featured 

Listen to what the human ‘you’ wants, not what the title on your business card demands.
— Engage (Intl.) - "Think Human: The psychology of user experience design"
Orvet speaks through the lens of Swedish culture when he cites precisely such a standard: ‘It’s ok to be human; it’s ok to be you. And on top of that, you can also be this role at the company where we work. It’s always having the individual at the forefront.’
— Cultivating a Creative Culture by Justin Dauer (Lead Hand Books)
Orvet said corporations have done a good job at suppressing employees’ desire to be productive. Tablets and smartphones don’t suppress that desire.
— InformationWeek (United States)
User Experience is also about creating something that evokes emotion and provides something better, simpler or more effective. Like Readmill that combines a clear, calm yet very lust filled way of encouraging reading. Or Soundcloud’s simple way to share music and sounds. They both allow us to play with and explore our human senses, said Jaan Orvet.
— Metro - "He's designing the internet of the future"

The press coverage for Huddle during my tenure as UX & Design Director was very positive. 

Huddle has a well-designed user experience, consistent across workspaces
— TechRepublic
A very simple and clean interface, easy to understand and use
— CMS Wire
The breakout success of the year
— Read Write Web
The jewel in tech venture capitalist Eden Ventures’ crown
— Wall Street Journal