Sara Beckman

Senior Lecturer and Earl F. Cheit Faculty Fellow



Sara Beckman

Sara Beckman is the Earl F. Cheit Faculty Fellow at the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley where she designs and delivers courses on design, innovation and product management. Her years of experience teaching design and innovation-related topics at the Haas School of Business culminated in creating a course, Problem Finding, Problem Solving, which draws from design thinking, critical thinking and systems thinking approaches. That course is now offered to all business students at Haas, and is offered in a variety of online and in-person formats to students across the UC Berkeley campus including the School of Public Health and Masters in Development Practice programs as well as to executives from around the world. She served as Chief Learning Officer for the newly founded Jacobs Institute within the College of Engineering, launching a teaming with diversity curriculum for project-based courses in engineering. Support from the BigIdeas program yielded a new course, Collaborative Innovation, which she co-teaches with faculty from the Theater and Dance Performance Studies and Art Practice departments. Her recent research focuses on the role of learning style diversity on design teams, and on the pedagogy of teaching design. Sara directs the Product Management Program for the Berkeley's Center for Executive Education, serving over 350 product managers from around the world each year. She works with a wide variety of companies teaching and helping them implement design and innovation practices. Before joining Berkeley Haas, Sara worked in the Operations Management Services group at Booz, Allen & Hamilton and ran the Change Management Team at Hewlett-Packard. Sara received her BS, MS and PhD degrees from Stanford University in Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management.

Beyond Design Thinking

Design thinking seems to have taken the world by storm as hundreds of companies puzzle over how to integrate it into their organizations. Some claim outstanding results, others less so. In this session, we will dig under the hype, identify the core elements of what design thinking represents, and examine the path design thinking might take to be meaningful and useful in the future.

Twitter @SaraLBeckman