Jon Cagan Photo
Segal Seminar Series

Jon Cagan

November 3, 2009, 4:00 - 5:00 p.m.
Ford Motor Company Engineering Design Center
ITW Classroom (1.350)
2133 Sheridan Rd. Evanston , IL 60208

Understanding Product Emotions and their Impact on Design Generation


People buy and use products both for their functionality and their emotional reward. This talk proposes that the product itself communicates and elicits emotions, and that the emotional aspects of the product are fundamental to its success. Through a combination of real world research and laboratory experiments we demonstrate that customers will choose and pay for products that they value, not just products that complete tasks or save resources but also those that provide emotional fulfillment, products that go beyond meeting functional needs. The talk will present an analytical approach to designing a strategy to infuse emotional value in products. Next we inroduce emerging technology that allows marketers and designers to elicit and quantitatively model emotional preference to visual form alternatives.


Jonathan Cagan, Ph.D., P.E., is the Ladd Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, with appointments in the School of Design and Computer Science. He is an expert in product development and innovation methods for early stage product development. Both his design methods and computer-based design research have been applied in a variety of industries. He is the co-author of two books: Creating Breakthrough Products, and The Design of Things to Come, and is currently working on a third book. He has consulted with a variety of small and large companies in diverse areas on product development, brand strategy, and strategic planning. He co-founded DesignAdvance Systems, Inc., a company focused on developing CAD software for the early synthesis processes. Prof. Cagan teaches new product development at Carnegie Mellon and in executive training sessions in small and large companies. He also co-directs the Masters in Product Development program and co-directs the Center for Product Strategy and Innovation at Carnegie Mellon. Cagan is a Fellow of the ASME.

Contact Wei Chen at 847-491-7019 or for further questions.