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dmi:Design Leadership Conference



dmi:Design Leadership Conference #DLC18


October 7-9, 2018


Registration Fees for Full Conference Pass:

Non-Member - $1750
Member - $1600


Conference + Membership - (+$200 to the registration price to become a DMI Member or renew your membership) a $100 savings!
One-day conference registration is available


Register Here



The dmi:Design Leadership conference is a great opportunity to build your network, spread your ideas, and learn lessons from the diverse stories of those in attendance. In the fast paced world of design-driven innovation the kind of learning that happens through peer-to-peer exchange is invaluable. That is why this conference presents so many opportunities to meet new people, start new discussions, and work on challenges in small groups.

Presenters share engaging stories, workshops teach creative skills, and discussions re-frame perspectives. The dmi:Design Leadership conference is an immersive experience that deepens our understanding of the power of design and innovation to sustain positive business, social and cultural value.



Conference Schedule-at-a-Glance



Sunday, October 7


Monday, October 8


Tuesday, October 9

4:30 - 5:15 

"Check-In" - Member Only Activity






River Cruise



9:00  Welcome

Sessions & Interactive Breakout Sessions

  Sessions, Executive Roundtables & Interactive Breakout Sessions


dmi: Design Value Awards Dinner Ceremony

5:00  "Check-Out" - Member Only


Sunday, October 7th - Optional Pre-Conference Events


Member-Only Check In (this isn't registration!)
4:40 - 5:15 The Sonesta

Get the most from your conference experience by “checking-in” with other DMI Members at this special event. It’s a chance to meet other attendees before the conference officially starts. Share your career notes, opportunities and questions with peers that can offer their support. We don’t mean to brag, but we’ve had Design Managers find their next jobs, suppliers connect with producers, and consultants meet new clients at Member Only Check-In.

Not a member yet? Register with the “Membership Bundle” option to get your registration + year membership (or renewal) for a $100 discount. More information




Optional River Cruise
6:00pm Yacht Club Dock

Join us, meet other conference attendees, and see old friends on a fun river cruise. Enjoy light refreshments as we take in spectacular views of historic and contemporary architecture along the Charles River basin. These are simply the best waterfront views of Boston and Cambridge, including Beacon Hill, Esplanade Park, the Back Bay, Boston University, M.I.T., Harvard and countless sailboats and rowers! Select the "River Cruise" option when you register for the conference.  


Monday & Tuesday, October 8-9 - Full Conference


Keynote Sessions

Global Design and Innovation leaders will discuss the challenges and opportunities facing design management today. With the understanding that we learn best by listening, collaborating and sharing insights, keynote speakers are accessible throughout the conference.


John Maeda
Global Head, Computational Design & Inclusion, Automattic

Carol Smith
Senior UX Researcher, Uber ATG

Kwame Nyanning
VP Experience Design, McKinsey & Company, London 

Cheryl Heller
Communication Strategist Chair, MFA Design for Social Innovation, SVA; President, Measured Lab


Rama Gheerawo
Director, Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Royal College of Art

Mark Wolfe
Solution Architect Experience Design, Slalom Consulting 








Exclusive dmi:Executive Round-Table Sessions

Don't’ miss this opportunity to engage in fast-paced small group discussions with senior executives from BCGDV, J&J, GE, Royal College of Art and more. Each attendee will get a chance to participate in 3 small group sessions to discuss career development & advancement, universal design, and Design Management methods & tools. Wear your tennis shoes and dash to the tables you want to join! Don't miss out on this unique opportunity-



Interactive Breakout Sessions

Designers have a bias towards action. Interactive sessions at the Design Management Conference are meant to get you out of your chair and into small group collaborations. You'll meet new people, and work with new tools, new frameworks and in new ways to solve a challenge, discuss an issue, or dig into a "wicked problem."



The dmi:Design Value Awards Dinner Ceremony
6:00pm The Sonesta

The annual dmi:Design Value Awards (DVA) honor teams that have delivered significant value through design or design management practices. The 2018 winners will be announced in a lively ceremony on Monday evening October 9th.


Break out your party attire, raise a toast to all the finalists, and celebrate the value of design! Read more about the dmi:DVA and see last year's awards.


Wednesday, October 10th - Optional Workshop


Optional Workshop: Insider's Guide to Innovation
9:00 - 3:00 The Sonesta
$480 USD

How can you use Design Thinking and other human-centered approaches effectively, especially with limited time, budget and resources? Learn to work smarter in a world that is increasingly demanding. Rama Geerawho- Director, The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Royal College of Art, has developed and used techniques in over 100 ‘real world’ projects for a wide spectrum of clients. In this workshop, you’ll learn his insider’s guide to rapid, effective and aspirational innovation. Read more.



Venue & Accommodations



Conference Location and Room Block

The Royal Sonesta Hotel is located on the famous Charles River. Located right between Cambridge and Boston– you’re perfectly situated to explore the best of both vibrant cities. Whether it’s a morning run along the Charles, or an evening at one of Boston’s infamous pubs, you’ll enjoy close proximity to both historic Boston and tech-hub Cambridge.


DMI has secured a small block of rooms at the Sonesta Hotel at discounted group rate. Reservations must be made on or before Thursday, August 31, 2018 to qualify for the special rate. All conference participants are responsible for their own hotel arrangements and transportation to and from the venue. Please make your reservations early.


Royal Sonesta Hotel
40 Edwin H Land Blvd, Cambridge, MA 02142 - Phone: 617-806-4200


Rate: $ 275 King room (excludes local and state taxes of 14.45%.)

Reserve here before September 17, 2018 or guests can use the conference code 1013DMIFAL.






A quick scan of the attendees at any of our recent conferences will reveal why DMI events are renowned as much for the audience as for the presenters. Attendees represent movers and shakers with substantial budget authority. Sponsors are able to reach our audience with pre-event marketing and effective exposure during and after events. DMI offers a variety of conference sponsorship options to fit different budgets. Meet and mentor the best and brightest talent, contact Patricia Olshan or Carole Bilson for more information.


DMI offers an exclusive opportunity to sponsor current design and innovation students to attend the Design Leadership Conference.



Register Here



more Calendar

10/7/2018 » 10/9/2018
dmi: Design Leadership Conference

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