Imperial College London


Business School

Assistant Professor of Design and Innovation



+44 (0)20 7594 9228i.stigliani




395Business School BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Dr. Ileana Stigliani is Assistant Professor of Design and Innovation at the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Department. She received her Ph.D. in Management from Bocconi University, Milan.

Her research focuses on the cognitive aspects of innovation. In particular, she studies how material artifacts and practices influence cognitive processes – such as sensemaking and sensegiving, categorization, and perceptions of organizational and professional identities – within organizations.

She investigates these themes in design-based companies – e.g., Alessi, Kartell, Alfa Romeo, Piaggio, and Ducati - and in Product and Service Design consulting firms – Continuum Innovation, IDEO, Live Work, Engine Service Design, etc.

In particular, while she was a visiting scholar at the Sloan School of Management of the MIT, Boston,  she conducted a ten-month ethnography of how designers work at Continuum Innovation, a world leading innovation and design consulting firm.

She's currently studying the cognitive dynamics underpinning the emergence of Service Design.

Ileana's research has been published or is forthcoming in the Academy of Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, the International Journal of Management Reviews, Organizational Dynamics, Organization Studies and the International Small Business Journal.

She is a member of the Editorial Board of the European Management Journal, and of Innovation: Organization and Management.

At Imperial, she teaches 'Management of Design' and "Design Thinking" to MSc, and MBA students, and Qualitative Research Methods to Ph.D. students.

In 2016, she received the Imperial College Business School Teaching Excellence Award for Innovation in teaching.



Fayard A-L, Stigliani I, Bechky BA, 2017, How Nascent Occupations Construct a Mandate: The Case of Service Designers' Ethos, Administrative Science Quarterly, Vol:62, ISSN:0001-8392, Pages:270-303

Wright M, Stigliani I, 2013, Entrepreneurship and growth, International Small Business Journal, Vol:31, ISSN:0266-2426, Pages:3-22

Elsbach KD, Stigliani I, Stroud A, 2012, The building of employee distrust: A case study of Hewlett-Packard from 1995 to 2010, Organizational Dynamics, Vol:41, ISSN:0090-2616, Pages:254-263

More Publications