Peter Jones photo
Peter Jones photo
Peter Jones
Associate Professor
Faculty of Design, Graduate Studies

Area(s) of Expertise

Social and Design Research, Services / Systems Design for Healthcare, Social Systems Design


Peter teaches in  the Strategic Foresight and Innovation and the Design for Health graduate programs. An experienced design researcher, Peter teaches systemic design courses and approaches to research and design science in healthcare, media, governance, social and policy design. He is a co-founder of the Systemic Design Association, and its RSD Symposia series, now in its tenth year. Peter continues collaborations with a worldwide community of leading scholars in systems thinking and service/system design, considered the systemic design field. Peter is research chair for the Flourishing Enterprise Institute, a research group formed to develop and promote the advancement of strongly sustainable business models and public policy. Peter leads innovation research in flourishing economies, cultural sustainability, healthcare system design, and complex social system design through the Strategic Innovation Lab.

Peter has over 20 years of experience in designing complex systems and information products, and has worked in the forefront of interaction design and user experience across commercial, government, and academic sectors.  He has designed leading informatics resources in scientific, legal, and medical practices, from concept research to market launch. He conducts ethnographic, foresight and experience design research to help people understand the impact of innovations that will impact these fields and change practice.  Peter actively publishes peer-reviewed studies on project-based research to establish grounding between the practice and research communities.

Peter received his doctorate from the Union Institute in 2000, with an interdisciplinary study of design and innovation management and research on embedded values in organizational innovation process.  He holds an M.A. in human factors psychology from the University of Dayton.  He has published over 20 journal and management articles, including client studies, available from ResearchGate. Peter's last book was Design for Care: Innovating Healthcare Experience published by Rosenfeld Media in 2013. He is working on a book with Kristel Van Ael on the Systemic Design Toolkit, to be published by BIS in early 2022. He has published two other books, and edited academic collections from the RSD Symposia. Peter’s books, papers and online work are at

Peter's research interests include:

  • Development of theory and practice in systemic design (social systems design), 
  • Soft services design, a systemic approach to designing for community and social health
  • Clinical informatics and information design for knowledge practices (health, science).
  • Methodological design of modes of inquiry and analysis, based on social, cognitive and design sciences
  • Dialogic design and collaborative foresight for complex stakeholder challenges
  • Flourishing (eco-social strongly sustainable) business models and societies
  • Organizational and institutional innovation (e.g. institutions of learning, education, social policy, foreign policy)
  • Human information behavior and sensemaking: Scientific and clinical knowledge media design for work practices and decision making


BA Wright State University, Dayton

MA University of Dayton, Human Factors Psychology

PhD Union institute, Cincinnati, Design and innovation Management

Professional Affiliations / Boards / Juries

Peter is a co-founder of the Systemic Design Association, a member society established in 2018 following five years as the Systemic Design Research Network. Peter has encouraged design action and leadership in multiple social and system change programs, including Drawdown Toronto and Unify Toronto. He is actively involved in the Canadian peace movement and new foreign policy, having hosted the World Beyond War conference at OCADU in 2018. Peter is a board member of the Institute for 21st Century Agoras, and maintains an active presence and practice in the international Dialogic Design community. He founded (2008) and facilitates the Toronto-based dialogue series known as Design with Dialogue to educate and socialize community-based learning of facilitative and co-creative engagement. He is active in ACM SIG-CHI, the IFSR. the International Society for System SciencesNational Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation, and maintains continuing relationships with many other organizations.