Why we started

theUXWhale has been started with a shared passion for Design. For us "to Design" is to solve human-centered problems that are systems-oriented and complex in nature. The challenge lies, to solve these types of problems, in developing the four C's:

  1. Compassion: Compassion is about understanding the user as a human being, who is a thinking & feeling being. To be compassionate goes beyond "to be in user's shoes" and includes her inner world of emotions and thoughts.

  2. Context: We believe-One cannot design by sitting in the office. For us, getting close to the user's place of work and living provides a true picture.

  3. Creativity: Design problems are complex and indeterminate. They cannot be solved using "linear" methods. The most appropriate solutions come after you have rejected 100s of "seemingly good" designs.

  4. Critique: Critique means questioning yourself by sitting together. An important part of design practice it helps in questioning our own assumptions and testing our design ideas.


Who We Are

We are a group of researchers and designers with multi-disciplinary expertise in Design, Arts, Psychology, Cognition, Policy making, Media and culture studies.

Our goal as a team of designers, social scientists and educators is a modest one. We come together with diverse expertise to foster an interdisciplinary, open-access space of engagement with critical thinking on design, UX and HCI.

We aim to develop a grounded approach to problems of design in everyday artefacts, practices and identities.

We aim to disseminate design pedagogy by engaging interlocutors including students, scholars, activists and members of diverse communities.

We take lived experience, material culture and relational sociality as the primary contexts of critical design practice. This entails the privileging of theory from below while locating design thinking at intersections of identity, culture and policy.

We are committed to advancing design thinking in India from multiple perspectives through establishing networks across academia, policy, non-profits and private sectors.


Our Advisors


Research Lead

Devanuj holds a PhD in Interaction Design from IDC School of Design, IIT Bombay. His research interests are primarily oriented towards Emergent Users (Next Billion Users).

Social Scientist

Pawan holds a PhD in Communication from the University of California, San Diego. His scholarship is situated at the intersection of media and cultural studies, postcolonial studies, social justice, digital technology and social identity.

Design Researcher

Susmita holds a PhD in Design, IDC School of Design, IIT Bombay. She has specialization in understanding visual perception and reasoning.


Our Team


Co-Founder & Design Researcher

​Pranjal is a Human-Centered Designer from Srishti Institute of Art, Design & Technology. He has worked with Dvara Research, Digital Identity Research Initiative, Indian School of Business and Idea Cellular. His special interests are in ethical data practices, online privacy, speculative and critical design.

Co-Founder & Design Lead

Deepak is a Interaction Designer and researcher with specialization in HCI (Human Computer Interaction) from IDC School of Design, IIT Bombay. His special interests are in user research, design for inclusive societies, design for education, multi-modal interface design and heuristic evaluation.

Co-Founder & Behavioral Scientist

Shanu holds a PhD in Psychology from Indian Institute of Technology Indore. She was a Fulbright Nehru Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA. Her research interests vary from Affective Science Cognitive Social science, Cross-cultural Psychology, and Cyberpsychology.


Partner & Design Researcher

Anushri has completed his post graduate studies in human-centered design and computing from Srishti Institute of Art, Design & Technology. She has the experience of working with research organizations, social tech start-up, and NGOs. Her work explores human-computer interaction design, participatory design, and critical making for and with the community.

Partner & Design Researcher

Syiam has completed his post graduate studies in human-centered design and computing from Srishti Institute of Art, Design & Technology. He has worked with Shopify, Accenture and a couple of UX research consultancies in the past. His practice involves applying design research methods. His special interests are in Embodied Interaction, novel interaction design techniques and service design.