Director of Design Strategy for a Chicago strategic branding company, Michael uses semiotics in brand development, visual language research & global brand alignment initiatives for some of the US's largest companies. A BA in Anthropology from Rutgers, he worked as a community developer in Zimbabwe then a researcher at UC San Francisco into the physiological effects of multisensory signifiers on cocaine users. After working for Interbrand, Michael earned a Masters in Design Methodology from the Institute of Design in Chicago, closely mentored in semiotics by Duncan Berry, renowned Peircian and expert in neuro-design.
Oliver Litten is co-owner of Group Red, based in Hamburg and Berlin. A brand strategist, trends and innovation expert he was worked for leading agencies, including Interbrand and Added Value, and his client list includes Virgin, Levis, Apple, Beiersdorf, Pepsico/Lays, Nike, Procter & Gamble, GlaxoWellcome and Unilever. Oliver specializes in facilitating creative workshops and immersion experiences where clients come face to face with opinion formers.
Arief is a budding cultural researcher and semiotician, with a BA (Hons) in International Media & Communications from the University of Nottingham, focusing on cultural studies. Aiming to grow as a communications analyst by applying cultural insights toward consumer engagement and brand development strategies, his Third Culture Kid upbringing has led to particular interest in the negotiation of transnational identities, intercultural relations, and the nuances of cultural meaning. He is also fascinated by popular culture phenomena and emergent cultures.