Professor for Design Thinking and Innovation Research
Falk is professor at the Hasso Plattner Institute, one of Europes leading institutions for Design Thinking, Human-centered Design and Computer Science. Further, Falk is adjunct professor at the University of St.Gallen (HSG), one of Europe's leading universities for Strategy and Management. He received his PhD in Business Administration from the University of St.Gallen with focus in IT performance management and controlling. Since then he is actively doing research in two areas; first, Internet of Things as head of the “Competence Center for Industrial Services and Enterprise Systems” - a collaboration between large organisations like SAP, ThyssenKrupp and Linde MH and second, Human-centered Design and Design Thinking.
Over the last fifteen years Falk is training students and practitioners worldwide in using Design Thinking as a mind- and toolset to solve wicked problems in a human- and user-centered way. As part of his role he worked together with companies from almost all industries like FIFA, Allianz, E.ON, SAP, Roche, Sanofi, Merck, Audi, Siemens and more.
In between, Falk is pursuing to spread HCD and Design Thinking globally in a free and easy to access way for everyone. His mission and focus currently is foremost (East) Africa. Together with the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ) and UN-Habitat Falk ran a project to improve the conditions for maintainability of open community fields in informal settlements in Kenya. As part of the last 26th UN Governing Council he agreed with representatives from the United Nations to set up an entrepreneurship program for job creation in four African countries as part of a global UN initiative to enable the youth to start their own businesses successfully. Since then he conducted extensive field research with the youth in Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Kenya.
Falk is also founder and spokesman of the SUGAR network - a global movement and initiative of over 20 universities (including Stanford University) and more than 100 companies to apply Design Thinking to real world problems. As part of his research activities he has published more than 180 articles in peer reviewed journals and conferences, ICIS and MISQE amongst them. Furthermore he received several best paper awards in the last years.