With twenty years of experience in designing and understanding complex systems, Peter Jones is committed to advancing his career by coming to the Tec.
By Mónica Torres | CONECTA NATIONAL NEWS DESK - 03/19/2024 Photo Udell Jiménez

Who do you want to be in the future? is the question posed by Peter Jones, who holds a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies, Design, and Innovation Management.

Jones, a new faculty member of Tec de Monterrey’s Faculty of Excellence, lived through the technology boom of the late 1990s until his eventual move to Canada. He describes himself as a risk taker eager to rise up to a new challenge.

“As a futurist, I gravitate towards places where I see the society and the country moving as one in the right direction, which is precisely what I see in Mexico today, so I couldn’t pass up this opportunity,” Jones remarked.

We don’t have enough time in our lives to change every country’s panorama and it is therefore imperative to support and join those who are innovating and moving in a positive direction,” he added.

Learn more about the journey taken by this researcher, teacher, and key designer of leading IT resources in the fields of scientific, legal, and medical practice, from conceptual research to launch.


Peter Jones describes himself as a risk taker.
Peter Jones entra a la Faculty of Excellence como profesor inspirador

Following his intuition: from New England to Monterrey

Jones, who was born in Massachusetts in the U.S., explained to CONECTA that he was raised in New England with a “strong Bostonian accent” in a conservative “Yankee” culture.

“My family history dates back to the founding fathers in the 1600s, which makes me the first person from either side of my family for 400 years or more to have even left the United States,” the professor recalled.

In the early 2000s, the futurist started his own company Redesign Research, which focused on design research for innovation and built a broad client base in Europe and the United States.

Furthermore, the innovator worked with companies such as LexisNexis, one of the largest legal databases at the time, developing software tools for lawyers and then for healthcare providers.

“One of the most important milestones in my career was when I worked as the lead designer of the digital journal Science Direct in 1996, collaborating on both research and design,” Jones explained.

For his part, the professor said that Dayton, Ohio, a city he refers to as the “Silicon Valley” of machining, was where his interest in his current fields of study really came to life.

However, concerned about the political and social stability of his country during the administration of President George W. Bush, the academic decided to take a chance on Canada, where he had the good fortune to be given a faculty position at Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD).

“Not many people know this, but I have been a peace activist since an early age, so going to a country that is moving in a positive direction is a must, although deciding to leave the U.S. for the first time was definitely a vulnerable moment for me,” he confessed.


The futurist says that people have always been his priority.
Peter Jones de la Faculty of Excellence pone a las personas en su narrativa

His lifelong vision: people at the forefront of the narrative

While much of Jones’s work and research has been aimed at understanding how organizations manage their processes effectively, the futurist says that people have always been his priority.

Jones explained his professional vision: “My career has largely been focused on putting people first in any kind of design process, irrespective of whether it is a system or product service.”

“It’s based on the psychology of human factors, how people interact with tools, devices, websites, phones, and so on, especially when dealing with professionals when every minute, every second and every decision is extremely significant.”

By helping improve the relationship users have with their software, the business owner has been able to reduce the time needed to make a diagnosis in the medical field and improve the way lawyers resolve complex cases through user-friendly, effective information design.

Jones is still interested in how humans behave when handling information and how this affects decision-making because this line of inquiry has, in his opinion, the potential to impact micro and macro systems.

Another way in which Peter has adopted a more human approach to his view of innovation is by drawing from what he learned in Canada about how Native Americans think and their approach to sustainability.

“When I talk about ecological responsibility and sustainability, even with reference to innovation and technology, I never discount how Native Americans think (seven generations back and seven generations forward) to analyze the impact of our actions.”

Knowledge of indigenous groups in Canada was restricted for many years until relatively recently, so I am excited to be able to include their vision as part of my narrative and in my dialogues with students,” he adds.


The consultant explained that Monterrey was a city with high potential for socially responsible innovation.
Peter Jones de la Faculty of Excellence explica la innovación socialmente responsable

Socially responsible innovation: the path for the future

Although Jones embraces multiple areas in his research and approach to innovation, one concept that has stood out in recent years has been that of socially responsible innovation.

Socially responsible innovation can be the way a company changes its business model to respond to the needs of society instead of just targeting its own objectives (usually with money in mind).

“It’s essentially creating a new value system, involving a return to both people and the ecosystem and looking at how you might cooperate with other companies to share resources and the impact that could generate,” he added.

In this sense, the academic explains that one of the great potentials of this approach (and simultaneously one of its greatest challenges) is to map out how this process is used by public sector organizations as well as in municipalities or cities.

Moreover, Jones explains how difficult it can be for companies to see the gaps in their own model, change the way they operate, and discover how to create value in a way that respects and gives back to the society they belong to.

“I happened to see a company in Dayton that helped its employees during the flood season, but then moved the entire company somewhere else to get a better tax deal; these are the kinds of situations we want to avoid,” he said.

On the other hand, the consultant explained that Monterrey was a city with high potential for socially responsible innovation, citing as an example the work of distritotec with its balance between social, environmental, and architectural spheres.

The distritotec project initiated by Tec de Monterrey seeks urban regeneration and facilities to promote coexistence and knowledge in the area around the Monterrey campus.


Peter Jones, from the Faculty of Excellence, is a systems researcher and teacher.
Peter Jones de la Faculty of Excellence es investigador y docente de sistemas

Taking the teaching of systems and services to the next level

According to Peter, the Faculty of Excellence was not his first encounter with the institution as he had already set his sights on Tecnológico de Monterrey thanks to its growing academic networks.

“Although I didn’t study alongside them, I knew of professors like Roberto Flores, Roxana Cardenas, and Reynaldo Treviño-Cisneros, who taught classes in a unique way, and I thought there must be something special here at the Tec, the professor recalled.

Jones explained that, knowing how he felt, the institution had reached out to him by phone to invite him to join the elite faculty team known as the Faculty of Excellence.

For him, this meant the opportunity not only to emigrate to a country which in his opinion had an optimistic future, but also space to work on teaching, research, and entrepreneurial projects.

“One thing that struck me during that first call was that I didn’t feel like I was being interviewed for just any university position, but for a company looking for high-caliber talent; I confess I was thrilled.”

Jones is enthusiastic about the wealth of student talent in Monterrey and is open to the idea of collaborating on future multidisciplinary research with the faculty.

“My goal is for my students to learn to work around the complexities of the future and the dangers of uncertainty, which is a very real part of technology,” says the newly hired professor.


¿What is the Faculty of Excellence?

Tec de Monterrey has started bringing together world-renowned leaders as part of its Faculty of Excellence initiative, so that they can contribute to the institution’s teaching program.

This initiative seeks to attract one hundred international professors to broaden students’ learning experience and promote international cooperation, innovation, diversity, and multidisciplinary research.

Find out about other professors involved in this initiative here.





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