Sérgio Tavares, ph.D.


I'm Sérgio. I use strategic design and empathic data to help enterprises to responsibly design our future.
I'm also a scholar, researching how design affects our relation with technology — and ourselves.

Master of Arts
Culture & Technology

Doctor of Philosophy
Culture & Technology

Lead Service Designer
frog Design


Born and raised in Brazil

Screen Shot 2021-06-25 at 0.49_edited.jpg

In 2021 we are leaving the cocoon. Service Designers must rediscover our needs
— that's purpose of empathic data.

Empathic data
/ˌempəˈθetɪk ˈdeɪtə/

Understanding the humanity in each available data set has access to is the present challenge that separates 20th from 21st Century designers.

— What is it like to be your customer?

A post-Covid world is more digitized. Designers and businesses need new approaches to connect with customers.

It takes more than a survey to tap onto someone's real aspirations. It takes more than an interview to confirm what is relevant for business.

Empathic data turns the strengths of different research methods into meaningful insights. Furthermore, it breaks the team silos, and expands everyone's horizon view.

Firstly, the designer should be data-agnostic, that is, handling quantitative and qualitative data.Secondly, data points are taken in account only if they help to understand aspirations, needs and motivations of the people who are relevant to the business.It's a simple mindset shift, but a highly effective one.

— A primer for Empathic Data

Service building blocks
Customer Journey Essentials
Media collection
Journals and reporting
Video interviews & coded assessment

Social profiling
Social Network analysis
Influence & Opinion
Decision-making processes

Hypothesis & tests 
Community & Iteration
Beta launch & A/B Testing
Problem-Solution/Product-Market Fit

The customer

The customer

Personal profiling
Digital ethnography
Digital footprint investigation
Values & Psychographics

Insight packages
Value proposition creation
KPI setting & Journey Ops

How to enhance your research method suite

Learning quickly what your strategic customers want

Convincing management: the slide deck

Run this workshop to train your team

“Hi Sérgio, I just discovered you online through your amazing content!
Thanks for sharing your wisdom!”​

—  Christina A.,PhD, University of West Attica

— The Blog

Once in a while I share a letter for aspiring strategic designers.


The latest trends in design strategy, with clarity to develop your design, interpersonal and research skills as a Service Designer.

Your data is secure, and will never be sold. 

Thanks for submitting!