Skip to content

Heath Reed

Heath Reed MA, BA (Hons) FRSA


My professional career begun in the mid 1980’s when I held a series of work experiences in theatre, film, animation, 3D and graphic design. I subsequently worked as a self-employed designer, illustrator, model and film maker, in the UK and overseas until the early 1990's. This eventually led me to discover Industrial Design and undertake a BA (Hons) in Design Innovation as a mature student in 1996. The subject area has provided a working space where many skills and interests combine with an inventive streak. From '99 to '07 I delivered industrially faced design consultancy before undertaking a MA in Design (Sustainability) from '08 to '11.

I am a member of the Lab4Living core team.

  • About

    I have been committed to the field of new product research and development in practice and have a particular interest in how design can contribute to a better ways of living, the link between design innovation and sustainable futures. How we draw together creativity, design and technology has been a prime and long standing motivation.

    Prior to MA I had had become increasingly interested in how design, both commercial and academic, offers opportunities not only for problem solving but for problem setting and about its value and role in societal contexts. Since 2007 I have been working in those overlapping spaces and I continue to deliver practice and research, using a broad range of traditional and newly learned skills to help unravel sometimes diverse and conflicting subject matter.

    Collaborations with Materials, Social Sciences and Humanities, Robotics, Fashion, Computing and Science institutes at Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam Universities. Working as Co-applicant, Design Lead, Co and Principal investigator, key to all successful outcomes has been an openness and willingness of project partners to engage with design as a strategic development partner, rather than a supplier, to think outside traditional disciplinary boundaries, and to get as close as possible the experiences of people living with autism, motor neuron disease, thalidomide and breast cancer, to name a few.

    Ultimately, I aim to support and instigate cultural change and make further contributions to the joining up of commercial design practice with academic research, such that we conduct high quality interdisciplinary inquiry that is capable of seeding innovation and in turn converts to real world, socially valuable products. I believe these are areas that Design is well positioned to direct, support and deliver. In this way I believe that design can provide the opportunity to 'invent' as well as respond in more holistically considered ways, to bring about innovative solutions.

    Three dimensional design and design practice, its role and value in multi and interdisciplinary research. Holistic design research leading to new product innovation. Sustainable design beyond material selection.

  • Teaching

    Science, Technology and Arts

    MA Design Programme

    Product Design, Packaging Design, Graphic Design, Illustration, Metalwork and Jewellery and Engineering, mentor and supervisor. Occupational Therapy student mentor

    Negotiated Projects

  • Research

    • Art and Design Research Centre, Communication and Computing Research Centre
    • Cultural Communication and Computing Research Institute

    Support4All (NIHR, i4i) Co-I

    DUTE, Light Armour (HM Gov) Pi


    Future Bathroom (EPSRC) Design RA

    Innovage (FP7) Design Lead

    Medic of the Future (DSTL) PI

    Fingermarks (SBRI) Design PI

    Head Up (NIHR, i4i) Co-I

    Sheffield Children's Hospital NHS Trust
    Weston Park Hospital NHS Trust
    Net Composites
    Airbus International
    Marshalls Aerospace
    Ministry of Defence / DSTL
    Home Office
    National Institute for Health Research
    Finance Birmingham
    Devices for Dignity

  • Publications

  • Postgraduate supervision

    PhD Advisor
    Fine Art

  • Media

    Heath is a principal designer at Design Futures, a multi-disciplinary design group based at the University. A fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, he has extensive experience in product design for industry, taking many products through from concept design to production, from one-off and low volume products to mass produced goods.

Share this page

Cancel event

Are you sure you want to cancel your place on Saturday 12 November?