Clive van Heerden is the director of Design-Led Innovation at Philips Design. Here he works primarily in driving the “Probes” programme, which consists of “far-future” research initiatives aimed at identifying long-term systemic shifts and anticipating changes in future lifestyles.
Van Heerden joined Philips Research in 1995, where he was tasked with bringing designers into a technical research environment. In 1998 he moved to Philips Design where he became the director of the Soft Technologies design research project. In this position Van Heerden coordinated a team of experts from various textile and apparel disciplines to develop wearable electronic and conductive textile solutions. In his time with Philips, Van Heerden has also managed the Philips Design branches in Redhill, New York and London.
After graduating with a degree in social sciences in South Africa in 1986, Van Heerden left for London where he completed a research fellowship at CCIS at Westminster. He graduated in 1991 with a master's degree in interaction design from the Royal College of Art in London.
His most recent work under the Probes banner has included Electronic Tattoo, Emotional Sensing apparel, Sustainable Habitat and Microbial Home. The Probes team, under Van Heerden’s leadership, has won numerous international awards including a Red Dot, IF Award and a Time magazine acknowledgment for Best Invention in 2007.