Roberta Tassi

Service Designer

The first time I heard about service design I was at the end of my master degree in Industrial Design at Politecnico of Milan. I didn’t immediately realize the full meaning and potential of the subject, but I was fascinated by the intrinsic complexity of the notion of “service” and the idea that designers could apply their competences to such an intangible matter, working at the intersection between innovation, human behaviours and technology. That’s how I started to search for the tools and methodologies that could help designers deal with service ideation and implementation. In 2009, the results of my research were published online in a website called, one of the first collections of tools for service design that became famous worldwide.

In the following ten years, I’ve been working on research and service design projects in various sectors and geographies. In 2010 I started my career at frog, leading the development of the Design Research practice, and in 2016 I founded oblo, the hyper-specialized design agency I currently run. My friends and colleagues know me for being constantly on the move: my projects and field-trips have brought me all over the world. I had the opportunity to work in very different context and environments, from designing a connected system for the management of diabetes to rethinking the fire response services for informal settlements of big cities in developing countries. It’s during one of those long projects abroad, in Nairobi in 2015, that I felt the need to move back to Italy, and use the knowledge and experiences developed over time to contribute to the country I wanted to live in.

I wished I could be part of the Team from the beginning, but initially, there weren’t any open positions for service designers. After contributing for one year as external consultant, I finally became part of the team of experts in March 2019. The two main projects I’m working on at the moment are: the app IO, focusing on the definition of the service model and user experience for both citizens and institutions, and Designers Italia, in terms of building design kits, writing guidelines and spreading the use of the design system.

At the beginning of April, I published the book Service Designer, edited by FrancoAngeli. The book describes the challenges that a practitioner nowadays encounters in designing services, and introduces the story of the Digital Transformation Team among the various case studies. While walking the reader through the struggles of this profession in constant evolution, what strongly emerges is the responsibility I feel everyday, as service designer, in shaping solutions that could really generate a positive impact on people’s lives, and provide concrete answers to recurring problems.

I mostly like to dedicate my free time to my friends or read books by Chatwin and other explorers. I also love to travel and go around searching for stories, that I collect and memorize with drawings, short writings or photographies.

Start Date: March 6, 2019

Period Provided: until December 31, 2019

Annual Compensation: € 75.000

Approved by the Court of Auditors: April 17, 2019

Last update: 09/14/2019
Back to topBack to top