We understand that decision-makers may want to learn more about the everyday realities of the people they serve, but could be constrained by the day-to- day challenges of running their organizations. Resources might therefore be underutilized, even with the best intentions.
Curiosity bridges the worlds of decision-makers and users to create relevance and optimize resources. By participating in people’s daily activities, we can help decision-makers create services that enrich the human experience, by gaining local insight on: people’s systems of beliefs, values, and practices; social networks; rules of engagement; and artifacts and materials.
We challenge armchair assumptions about how people view the world and live their lives. We ask the right questions to strike a balance between possibility with practicality, bridging what users value with what our clients can deliver.
Curiosity began in 2012 when Pamela Cajilig and Birdie Salva were introduced to each other by a common acquaintance. The two shared a passion for inclusion in the design process as well as frustration over the wastefulness of ill-designed products and services. Since both of them had a mutual interest in setting up a research-based design agency in the Philippines, Pamela and Birdie combined their skills in ethnographic design research and business innovation management to establish Curiosity. Applying principles in user-centric design, Pamela and Birdie refined Curiosity’s offerings.
They frequently examined the relevance of every aspect of the business with current and potential clients: from services offered, to pricing and pitch decks, to business card design, and research presentations. Diego Maranan soon lent his expertise in interaction design, and Kristine Layaoen later joined the fray as her business process analyst skills became critical to meeting the growing demand for UX Research services. Curiosity’s offerings have since expanded and continue to grow, while the firm’s commitment to facilitate the creation of meaningful products and services remains unwavering.
Pamela has a background in cultural anthropology and design research applied to fields such as post-disaster recovery, social housing, community health, financial literacy, urban design, and design thinking. She thrives in transdisciplinary environments and enjoys the challenge of developing projects in unchartered territory. As Executive Research Director at Curiosity, Pamela leads the firm’s contextual research projects, harnessing her 20 years of experience in qualitative research. Prior to co-founding Curiosity, Pamela spent a decade in consumer research and brand strategy, and held key positions in Manila, Bangkok, and Kuala Lumpur as part of the Ogilvy Group.
Pamela regularly shares what she learns through work to various communities of practice through publication, teaching, training, and public presentations to both local and international audiences. She was recently Vice President at Anthropological Association of the Philippines, and serves on the Advisory Boards of WeDpro (women’s rights and education) and Roots of Health (maternal health). She was also a 2017 Visiting Fellow at the International Advanced Research Institutes at Brown University and is presently an International Fellow for the Humanitarian Innovation Initiative at the same university’s Watson School of Public and International Affairs.
Pamela holds degrees in BA Communication Research and MA Anthropology from the University of the Philippines.
Birdie is a business innovation consultant and user experience researcher with a background in brand management, industrial design, and information systems. For the last five years, he has provided design and UX research services to clients in fields such as airlines, banking, consumer goods, healthcare, insurance, and telecom.
As Curiosity’s General Manager, Birdie oversees the operations of the company and provides perspective on innovation frameworks and UX strategies for the various research projects.
He regularly shares his UX research work and experience through lectures and workshops to corporations, social enterprises, and students. He is currently serving as a mentor to Ideaspace Foundation’s 2017 cohort of startups, and has previously represented the Philippines in the Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Social Innovation Festival.
Prior to co-founding Curiosity, Birdie worked as a user researcher at an industrial design startup, and earlier as a brand manager for L’Oréal Philippines. He was also a lecturer at Ateneo de Manila University’s School of Management for the elective “Managing Business Innovations.”
Birdie holds a degree in BS Management Information Systems from Ateneo de Manila University.
Kristine is a strategic business consultant and customer insight specialist with 20 years of local and regional experience in process intensive industries. She approaches complex business and service design challenges with a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods with practice grounded in design research, CRM and business analysis. She leads Curiosity’s UX research for a wide range of industries including healthcare, telecoms, finance and airlines.
Prior to joining Curiosity, Kristine has worked as a project manager and industry consultant for various data analytics and digital consulting projects around Asia during her stint at Redpill Solutions, a Singapore based consulting firm. She also held key market research and CRM positions among leading telecommunications companies including Globe Telecoms where she had extensive experience in the mass market, pre-paid, international, corporate and mobile commerce user segments.
Kristine supports various government and NGOs maternal health initiatives through facilitating design service workshops and user research. Most recently, she has conducted an in-depth study engaging multiple stakeholders to improve the health care service experience of mothers belonging to the marginalized sector in Metro Manila. She is also a member of the Advisory Council of The Redwoods Condominium Corporation where she recommends policy review and leads community development and outreach activities.
Kristine took up BS Statistics at University of the Philippines and MBA at the Ateneo Professional Schools.
Diego S. Maranan is a transdisciplinary new media artist and technology researcher who investigates how technology can enrich and reimagine our relationship with our bodies and with the environment.
In addition to co-founding Curiosity, Diego is an Assistant Professor in Information and Communication Studies at the University of the Philippines Open University. He co-founded SEAD, an interplanetary network of individuals working in art, science, engineering and advocacy, and advises for WeDpro, an NGO that protects women and youth in the Philippines against all forms of violence. Over the past twenty years, he has published research, led collaborative creative and scholarly projects, and exhibited his artistic work globally, for which he has received several international grants, scholarships, and awards.
Diego holds a BSc in Computing Science and Contemporary Dance and an MA in Interactive Arts and Technology from Simon Fraser University (Canada), and a PhD in Art and Media from Plymouth University (UK), where he was a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow in the CogNovo training program for cognitive innovation.