Prof. dr. Snelders, H.M.J.J.

Dirk Snelders is professor of Organising Product and Service Development at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering. His current research interest is in service design, in particular in how new service propositions can redefine relations between people in a service setting.

Academic Background

Dirk has a background in the social sciences (Tilburg University, University of Exeter, University of Namur), yet for most of his academic career he has taught and carried out research at design schools, at TU Delft, TU Eindhoven, and Aalto University. Over the years, his research interest has moved from the function of design in relation to aesthetics and branding, to the organization of design in relation to new service development. 


  • 1990 - 1995
    PhD Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology (NL)
  • 1984 - 1990
    MA Psychology, Tilburg University (NL) / University of Exeter (UK) 


  • 2014 till now
    Professor of Organising Product and Service Development, Delft University of Technology (NL) 
  • 2011 till now
    Project leader of CRISP-GRIP; a Dutch research initiative on the design of product-service systems, with researchers and designers from TU Eindhoven, TU Delft, Design Academy Eindhoven, and Philips Design
  • 2010 - 2014
    Visiting Professor of International Design Business Management (IDBM), Aalto University Helsinki (FI)
  • 2010 - 2014
    Associate Professor of Business Process Design, Eindhoven University of Technology (NL)
  • 1998 - 2010
    Assistant, and later associate Professor of Product Innovation Management, Delft University of Technology (NL)
  • 1994 - 1998
    Assistant Professor of Business, University of Namur (B) 

Specialisation / field of research

Dirk’s current research looks to design as a form of ‘care’. Focusing on healthcare, but potentially also other areas of care (as in tourism, catering, coaching, or animal welfare), the question is raised whether and how the care for others can be ‘designed’. Topics include the role of design in eco-system collaboration in care industries, design expertise for service development, designing human relations in service settings, service prototyping, etc.

Lectures and/or coaches students on

  • IDE Master projects (SPD and other) that focus on service design and/or issues of (health)care
  • Strategic Value of Design (SPD Master course)
  • SPD Research Project (SPD Master course)
  • Business, Culture & Technology (IDE Bachelor course)