Tracy Johnson

Tracy Johnson is a highly accomplished design anthropologist with an impressive background in innovation and social impact. Currently, she serves as a senior program officer focused on user experience and innovation for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s integrated delivery team. In this role, she creates a vision and builds capacity for applying human-centered design across the foundation’s portfolio of grants.

Before joining the foundation, Tracy had over 15 years of experience applying anthropology and design to business problems and social issues on behalf of Fortune 500 clients and within various international development areas, such as education, human rights, violence against women and children, and trafficking in persons. She held positions as the director of ethnographic research for Nurun and research director for Context-Based Research Group.

As an internationally renowned expert, Tracy has played a vital role in helping design organizations adapt to the social impact space and has contributed significantly to educating future generations of global social impact designers. In her latest work, she has been exploring how to more effectively merge design and data science to create a powerful synergy, where design challenges traditional notions of data and data science brings statistical power, novel discovery, and validation to design.

Tracy is also a contributor to the award-winning LEAP Dialogues: Career Pathways in Design for Social Innovation. Her global perspective is informed by her living and working experiences in countries such as Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Laos, Nigeria, Tanzania, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Thailand.

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