PKP Welcomes UX/UI Designer Devika Goel to the Team
Earlier this month PKP welcomed Devika Goel to the team as a UX/UI designer. Described as a ‘powerhouse’ by some of her colleagues, she is already well on her way to collecting and analyzing data that will help her implement more ‘community-centric design’ in her work.
Devika has lots to share about her experiences, her viewpoints on “current social, political and economic order”, and the reasons why open source matters to her. When asked about Gender Equality Week, Devika also answered with powerful words about underrepresentation and overcoming challenges. Meet Devika!
Devika, can you tell us a bit about where you are from and your background?
I have been working in the field of digital transformation, product design and strategy for about five years now. My expertise lies in seeing projects through the entire design cycle right from business strategy conceptualization via stakeholder and user research, persona creation, service blueprinting, wireframing of multiple journeys mapped to personas, user interface design and effective usability testing.
(Photo credit: Devika Goel)
Previously, I worked as a Product Lead with Dentsu Aegis Network in Mumbai and championed some pathbreaking digital products for Visa, Amazon, Starbucks, and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank.
Prior to that, I was working with Publicis Groupe as a Digital Strategist wherein I worked for a lot of public and government institutions and helped them ride the digital revolution wave with ease.
I also completed my masters in Design and Digital Transformation from Hyper Island in Manchester, United Kingdom along with a bachelors in Corporate Finance from Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies in Mumbai, India.
What fuels my professional energy is the various activities I undertake in my downtime like reading, cooking, traveling and binge watching more TV shows than I’d like to admit. My favorite genres of books and shows include thrillers, drama, mystery, and fantasy along with political and historical fiction.
How did you learn about PKP?
Like a good mystery novel where a story eventually unfolds in the protagonist’s favor, I stumbled upon PKP on LinkedIn when I was researching for more community-centric projects who are breaking free from the clutter of for profit consumer-centric businesses.
What was it about PKP that attracted you to the role?
What attracted me towards PKP was its commitment to creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive working environment and scholarly communications ecosystem.
Throughout my life, I attempted to navigate the world by putting communities, planet, inclusiveness, transparency and authenticity at the heart of every business design and strategy.
I believe working with PKP will give me an opportunity to agitate the current social, political and economic order by experimenting with new design models that honor our values, humanity, and sustainability.
What is your current role at PKP and what do you hope to accomplish here?
Currently I am working as a UX/UI designer with PKP with concentration on design and user research, user experience, interface design, usability testing and design analysis.
I hope to make the software more accessible, sustainable, inclusive and push the boundaries of design through PKP by introducing more community-centric design and strategic practices in the world- practices that will put authenticity, honesty, community and environment in each interaction.
I want to further the mission of PKP by creating a welcoming environment for all participants.
Why does open source matter to you?
To me, open source means the celebration of principles of open exchange, collaborative participation, rapid prototyping, transparency, meritocracy, and community-oriented development which, like I mentioned above, are principles that I want to incorporate in every design I make.
I believe it encourages collaboration in a world which is disjointed by various economic, political and societal bounds. I also believe that the progress we have made as civilization and the technologies we take for granted, would never have developed without open source.
It’s Gender Equality Week. Do you have any words about your experiences with gender equality in the field?
Yes, I identify as a female and my pronouns are she/her. The role of female designers has been woefully underrepresented in the field of product design. Most days you find yourself working with the odds completely stacked against you, but those were the experiences that has made me the designer I am today and has given me the power to achieve my dreams, set ambitious goals and deliver unique experiences.
What would you say to any young and aspiring people hoping to be in your field?
Do not forget that design has the ability to create new social patterns and bring about an improvement in the quality of life and the environment in which we live.
You will make several mistakes, struggle to find the right kind of projects and find yourself stuck on several occasions, but don’t give up as the past and the lessons we learn are our most helpful design tools that will empower your creativity and the process of learning and unlearning will work as stepping stones to the future you dream of.
As cliche as it sounds but, trust the process and have fun.
That was our interview with Devika Goel. Thanks again Devika for sharing your experiences, inspiration and empowerment!