Carissa Carter is the Director of Teaching Experiments at the Stanford d.school. She works to advance the discipline of design thinking through design and curricular projects with faculty, teaching fellows, and Stanford students. She teaches courses on maps and mapping, design synthesis, and introductions to design process.
As an established leader in her field Carissa works with clients that range from startups to the Fortune 500 on intentionally applying design to products, experiences, and services. She’s also been a researcher and product designer at Google and IDEO. D.school is the place for explorers & experimenters at Stanford University! It helps people develop their creative abilities. It’s a place, a community, and a mindset.
Stanford University’s d.school has gained recognition in recent years for introducing the problem-solving concept known as “design thinking“.
The special working environment, sophisticated innovation process and highly-qualified instructors provide the best conditions to the d.school students.
Leading the d.school’s Teaching + Learning team which designs curriculum and courses for our 1000+ students per year. Teaching courses on data and design, maps, and design for climate change.
Advancing the discipline of design thinking through design and curricular projects with faculty, teaching fellows, and Stanford students. She teaches courses on maps and mapping, design synthesis, and introductions to design process.
Paralleldesign Labs offers human-centered design and innovation services for organizations.
Designing the future of higher education with Stanford2025: 2025.stanford.edu.
Is there anything as exciting as unrolling a large paper map onto a thick, wooden table in a high-vaulted, cool, crisp space? Weighting the corners and spreading the document flat with bare hands makes a satisfying tuft of air that smells like knowledge spring out in anticipation. The data on the map is as much of a treat as the experience of its setup on the table.
Carissa loves sensory experiences, whether complex or simple, and she spends her time designing, teaching, and curating them. When she’s at the d.school, she works on the @Stanford Project, focused on designing the university experience of 2020. She thrives off of smart colleagues and students, and also enjoys coaching and creating content for the Executive Education program.
When she’s in her garage, Carissa is building. Lately she’s been screen printing puzzles and blocks, making skateboards, and crafting children’s furniture.
When she’s working with clients at Parallel Design Labs, she’s helping them build and execute their internal innovation training programs or running user research studies.
When it’s 6:06pm, Carissa takes a photograph. It’s been three years and counting.
Carissa’s first career was as a geologist. She studied glaciers in Alaska and steep slot canyons in Utah and Arizona and continues to pursue projects at the crossover between design and science. Maps, and the experiences they create, have been a thread through the whole journey.
Carissa has a BA in Geoscience from Williams College, an MS in Earth Sciences from UC Santa Cruz, and an MS in Product Design from Stanford Universit