Steffen P. Walz

Explorer & Professor of Design Innovation
Steffen P. Walz
Foto/Bild Credit
Phil Vetter Photography

Prof. Dr. Steffen is Explorer at diconium, a 360° digital transformation and software development branch of the Volkswagen Group. At diconium, he connects the dots between future mobility services and emerging technologies; sustainable development goals (including health and wellbeing); as well as novel forms of audience engagement; he also helps discover and venture into new business areas, both for Volkswagen units and for clients from a range of markets.

Steffen has earned a doctoral degree in Computer Aided Architectural Design from the ETH Zurich; he is Adjunct Professor of Design Innovation at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne; during his academic career, he had established and led the interactive entertainment R&D think tanks GEElab and GEElab Europe, collocated in Melbourne as well as in Karlsruhe. Steffen has founded (and exited) his own ventures; has published widely and delivered keynotes talks addressing digital design; games for impact; and other types of methods and technologies to motivate, engage and effect behavioral change. He is the maker of the FutureDeck, a playful ideation card deck to tell "stories from the future" and to train players to embrace uncertainty and ambiguity. The FutureDeck is played widely at firms and business schools including the University of St.Gallen's Executive School, where Steffen serves as Adjunct Lecturer. Steffen is also member of DROG, a digital resilience media collective battling disinformation on the Internet, e.g. with their acclaimed, evidence-based game 'vaccines' "Bad News" and "Go Viral!".

Steffen is co-organiser and curator of the bizplay congress in Karlsruhe, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2021 and which is dedicated to gamification and game design and their impact on business, art, technology and society; last but not least, he is co-initiator of the creatables initiative, which brings together game and experience designers as well as other digital creatives with businesses and organisations to jointly address the climate crisis and other sustainble development goals.