Ame Elliott

User experience design to re-imagine privacy, security, transparency, and ethics.

Design can change the world.


Ame (sounds like "Amy") Elliott is Design Director for Simply Secure, an educational nonprofit building a community of professional practitioners who put people at the center of privacy, security, transparency, and ethics. She uses a Human-Centered Design approach to the challenges of privacy and forges relationships with multidisciplinary teams of software engineers, user experience designers, and researchers. She is based in Berlin, Germany where she works on software design for information security with Trust7. In 2018 Ame was recognized as one of Fast Company's Most Creative People in Business.

Ame spent eight years in San Francisco at innovation consultancy IDEO where she oversaw the Design Research community, cultivating research excellence by thirty practitioners across two California locations. At IDEO, Ame was a senior Project Leader, delivering technology strategy work to Global 500 clients including Acer, AT&T, Ericsson, Fuji-Xerox, Gannett, HP, and Samsung. 

Ame is a passionate teacher and coach. She works with the fellows of the Open Technology Fund’s Secure Usability Fellowship and has provided user experience guidance to more than 40 independent technology teams. Her leadership of a multi-disciplinary team for Gannett resulted in the launch of The Bold Italic, a groundbreaking community journalism website that won awards from AIGA, IDEA, SF Weekly and the Webby awards. She led the IDEO team that created the Innovator’s Accelerator, an online social learning platform taught by Clayton Christensen of Harvard Business School, Hal Gregersen of INSEAD, and Jeffrey Dyer of Brigham Young University. She has taught courses at the Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design, the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Prior to joining IDEO in 2007, Ame was a Research Scientist in the Computing Science Lab at the Palo Alto Research Center (formerly known as Xerox PARC), and at Ricoh Innovations where she worked on pioneering smart home and workplace collaboration systems. She earned a Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley for her work developing hybrid physical-digital interactions to support the architectural design process and a Bachelor of Environmental Design from the University Colorado, Boulder. She holds 8 U.S. patents, and is the author of numerous peer-reviewed publications, including a chapter in the Oxford Handbook of Internet Psychology.

She lives in Berlin with her family and is available for freelance work.