Sean Hewens

As a Senior Design Lead in IDEO’s Design for Change studio in San Francisco, Sean helps companies and law firms use human-centered design to transform their organizations. Sean is fascinated with designing systems that allow companies to make bold decisions based upon bottom up insights from customers, and less on top-down intuition from far away office buildings. Most recently, Sean spent much of the last two years working with the British government to innovate their approach to international development. Sean has also been thinking a lot about the power of #analog networks in a #digital age and what the legal profession will look like in the year 2025.

Prior to joining IDEO, Sean led’s Amplify program, a five-year effort funded by the UK Department for International Development with the goal of making international aid more collaborative and more human-centered. Sean’s design teams tackled challenges such as safety for women in developing world slums and educational innovation for refugees. During his time at, Sean also led initiatives to spread human-centered design in the social sector, including the launch of the HCD Connect on-line platform and the creation of the Human-Centered Design for Social Innovation course for Acumen.

Before joining, Sean served as the Executive Director of Smallbean, a social enterprise designing solar-powered computer labs in East Africa. He also worked as a corporate attorney for four years. Sean holds an undergraduate degree from Columbia University, a law degree from Georgetown, and attended Massachusetts College of Art & Design.

On weekends and very early mornings, Sean is a writer, a fictional cartographer, and a beer maker.

Related Sessions

View full schedule

(c) Stanford Legal Design Lab, 2017