Patrick W. Jordan

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Patrick W. Jordan (born November 23, 1967) is a British/American writer, consultant and professional speaker. He advises many of the world’s leading companies on design, marketing and brand strategy and has also undertaken a variety of policy and strategy projects for the UK Government. He is best known for his book Designing Pleasurable Products, which is considered a pioneering work in the area of emotional design.

Early life[edit]

Jordan was born in London, England to an American father and British mother. He grew up in Somerset in the South West of England.

After leaving school Jordan trained as an apprentice with Rolls-Royce Plc. He has also worked as an adventure sports instructor, a motorcycling instructor and served briefly in both the British Army and Royal Navy.

He gained a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Bristol in 1989, a Master’s in Design and Ergonomics from the University of Birmingham in 1990 and a PhD in Psychology from the University of Glasgow in 1993.


From 1993 to 2000 Jordan worked at Philips Design in The Netherlands where he specialised in user research and trend analysis. In 2000 he was appointed Head of User Research at Symbian, later becoming Vice-President and Head of Design.

In 2002 he was awarded the Nierenberg Chair of Design at Carnegie-Mellon University, claimed to be the most prestigious appointment in US design education. He was the youngest person ever to have held this Chair.

He started his own consulting firm, The Contemporary Trends Institute in 2001 while still at Symbian. This company, which he ran until 2007, had a number of high profile clients including Starbucks, Gillette, Nokia and Microsoft.

From 2005 to 2006 he was Chair of Design and Marketing at the University of Leeds. He now operates as an independent consultant.


Pat Jordan has written or edited 6 books.

Designing Pleasurable Products

His best-known book is Designing Pleasurable Products (Taylor and Francis, 2000). This has become one of the most widely read and referenced books in the field.

In the book Jordan identifies four types of human motivation (‘pleasures’). He claims that success in the marketplace is dependent on connecting with users in one or more of these ways.

The four pleasures[1] are:

  • Physio – to do with the body and the senses.
  • Psycho – to do with the mind and the emotions.
  • Socio – to do with relationships and status.
  • Ideo – to do with tastes and values.

Other Books

Jordan’s other books are:

  • Usability Evaluation in Industry (edited with Bruce Thomas, Bernhard A. Weerdmeester and Ian McClelland), Taylor and Francis 1996
  • Introduction to Usability, Taylor and Francis 1998
  • Human Factors in Product Design (edited with William S. Green), Taylor and Francis 1999
  • Pleasure with Products: Beyond Usability (edited with William S. Green), Taylor and Francis 2002
  • How to Make Brilliant Stuff that People Love and Make Big Money Out of It, Wiley 2002

Include Conference[edit]

In 2001 Jordan co-founded Include,[2] an international conference on Inclusive or Universal Design. This conference is hosted bi-annually by the Royal College of Art


  1. ^ The four pleasures Open University Article on the Four Pleasures
  2. ^ Include Conference Web Pages

External links[edit]

Patrick W. Jordan – Patrick W. Jordan’s official website.

Biography from Usability Professionals Association

Carnegie-Mellon News Article on Patrick W. Jordan

The Pleasure of Pleasure in Use