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Adriana Kliegman

Core Member

Creative Engineering  

Responsible Design

I'm passionate about developing products, services, and ideas with benefits that help improve people’s quality of life. I start by understanding people’s needs, values, perceptions and lifestyles. My understanding of various manufacturing processes, technologies and materials allows me to find unique solutions that can be easily manufactured and that are long-lasting. I also use tried-and-true techniques applied in industries such as automotive and medical to mitigate risks associated with products’ lifecycles. I’m also very familiar with global regulatory requirements to ensure product compliance.


I have worked for several top Fortune 500 clients where I have developed award-winning products and I’m also inventor of several design patents. My background in sustainability has helped me gain a better understanding of the economic, social and environmental impacts associated with sourcing, manufacturing, use, disposal, and reuse of products. I also collaborated with a team at Columbia University’s Earth Institute on projects to help NGOs scale-up their sustainable technologies in Mexico. We did this by introducing them to interactive user research tools such as games, narrative interviews, and Photo-Voice to help them gain a better understanding of user needs, perceptions and values. These tools accommodate participation among different age groups, education levels, and genders allowing NGOs to identify relevant metrics to measure the impact of their technologies and to communicate them effectively to stakeholders.

I have B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas. Austin and have worked as an engineer and project manager in both the medical and consumer goods industries. I also earned a M.S. in Sustainability Management from Columbia University and I am a sustainable product design advisor for Arise International, a sustainability consulting group.


Areas of expertise:

- Product and service design

- Design for manufacturing

- Sustainable design practices 

- Materials: plastics and metals

- 3D CAD

- Risk analysis

- Environmental Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)



Adriana Kliegman started her Engineering career at Sulzer Orthopedics where she designed a patented surgical instrumentation systems for hip implants.  She also worked for Sryker Orthpedics where she conducted research to investigate causes for corrosion of hip implant materials.


She also worked at design firms Smart Design and Design Edge as an engineer and project manager. At Design Edge she designed consumer electronic products for major clients such as Dell Computer and Texas Instruments. At Smart Design she worked with major clients such as OXO Good Grips and HP developing award winning products and obtaining several patents.


Adriana also worked at Playtex Infant Care as a principal engineer where she developed best practices guidelines for 3D CAD users. She also developed award-winning infant care products troubleshooting manufacturing quality issues with overseas suppliers. After Playtex became part of Energizer, Adriana managed an innovation department where she developed a unique innovation process based on traditional and non-traditional user research and methodologies. She also established technology roadmaps to focus on investigating emerging technologies that could meet user needs.

One of the technologies that she identified for further research was bio-plastics and biodegradable plastics to use for disposable products such as liners for diaper pales and bottles. This led her to her studies in Sustainability at Columbia University where she conducted further research on these plastics using Life Cycle Assessment literature to evaluate their true environmental impact in comparison to traditional plastics. 

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