Jiani Zeng

is an industrial designer, engineer and researcher working in the intersection of consumer product design and technology. Her work explores new design opportunity beyond the limit of current manufacturing and materials like soft robotics, multi-material printing etc.

Jiani's work has been recognized in top international design awards like Red Dot Design Concept, International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA), Golden A’ Design Award etc. Her design has been featured in the Milan Design Week, CHI, Artsthread, italianbark, LUXOS and IDSA.

She has consulted and designed for multiple companies, including Seymourpowell, Hilti, Furrytail, MIT Design Lab and MIT Media Lab, not only helping them successfully deliver products from initial concept to final product launch but also looking at future design trends and brand strategy.

Jiani holds a BEng in Product Design and Manufacture from the University of Nottingham and a Master of Science in Integrated Design and Management (IDM) from MIT.

She is a co-founder and Executive Director of Product Design at Radical Department Inc., her studio is based in San Francisco.

Design Awards

A’ Design Award Winner 2018, Bronze   I   Italy
European Product Design Award 2019, Sliver   I   Europe
IDA Design Award 2017, Winner- Gold   I   USA
International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA) 2017, Sliver   I   USA
A’ Design Award Winner 2017, Gold   I   Italy
European Product Design Award 2017, Sliver   I   Europe
A’ Design Award Winner 2016, Bronze   I   Italy
Reddot Award: Design Concept, Finalist, 2016   I   Singapore
IDA Design Award 2015, Winner- Gold   I   USA
IDA Design Award 2015, Winner- Bronze   I   USA
Reddot Award: Design Concept 2015, Honorable mention   I   Singapore
IDA Design Award 2014, Winner - Gold   I   USA


CHI 2019
Scottish Event Campus
curated by ACM CHI Conference
Glasgow, UK 2019
Milan Design Week 2019
BASE Milano
curated by Ventura Project
Milan, Italy 2019
The MOOD Museum of Design
Como, Italy 2016
Cube Design Museum
Kerkrade, Netherlands 2016
Shenzhen International Industrial Design Fair
Shenzhen, China 2016
Red Dot Design Museum
Singapore, 2015

Radical Department  I    San Francisco  / USA
January 2019 - Present
Co-founder, Executive Director of Product Design
Butlr Technologies  I    San Francisco  / USA
February 2019 - Present
Co-founder, Product and Operation

Seymourpowell  I    London  / UK
June 2019 - September 2019
Foresight talent pool + Design Intern

MIT Media Lab  I    Cambridge  / USA
June 2018 - April 2019
Research Assistant

Furrytail  I    Hangzhou / China
December 2017 – March 2018
Industrial Designer

MIT Design Lab I    Cambridge  / USA
September 2017 - January 2018
Research Assistant / Designer

Hilti    I    Shanghai - Germany
January 2015- July 2016
Development Engineer - (Management associate)


professional experience

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)   I   Cambridge / USA
Integrated Design and Management (MS)
MIT Engineering & Sloan

University of New South Wales   I   Sydney / Australia
Industrial Design
High Distinction
University of Nottingham   I   Ningbo / China
Product Design and Manufacture (BEng)
Graduated with First class honor
2011 Dean’s Excellence Scholarship



Press & features

LUXOS - Coolest Ventura Future's Exhibitions
Ventura Future - Press release Milan Design Week 2019
ARREDATIVO - A’Design Award: 5 progetti vincitori per 5 categorie
ARREDATIVO - Ventura Centrale and Ventura Future two events not to be missed
DesignTaxi - Winning Communication Designs, Graphics, Packaging
IDSA - Today's #designhighlight can help reduce plastic waste and keep you clean!
Women of China - Award-winning Student Wooed by World's Top Unis
South China Morning Post - Chinese student accepted by seven top US universities
Xinhua News
Yahoo News

CHI 2019 Late Breaking Work
Bubble: Wearable Assistive Grasping Augmentation Based on Soft Inflatables