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Alexandra Fiorillo

Alexandra Fiorillo

Facilitator

The Design Gym

Brooklyn, NY

Vice President at ideas42

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The Design Gym

Facilitator

The Design Gym’s mission is to build a community of skilled problem solvers through a workshop-driven design thinking curriculum. We partner with organizations to help them approach their problems in a new way by connecting their challenges with our community. Everyone is a designer. It’s not about signature designers or photoshop skills. The Design Mind is a set of strengths and skills that anyone can learn.

We believe that as our world evolves, we need to start replacing old ways of thinking with creativity and innovation. Design is playing a central role in driving this change. Hence, we are building a community of solvers that have the skills and process to solve wicked problems by providing an avenue to learn design thinking in a pragmatic and affordable way.

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Career
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ideas42

Vice President

At ideas42, we use insights from behavioral economics and design thinking to design innovative policies and products to address persistent domestic and international social problems. We use behavioral economics for social good.

Alex has been able to translate her decade of experience in microfinance and enterprise development to the global health, education, and energy sectors while at ideas42. She continues to try to tackle persistent social and economic problems by employing a client-centric approach to deeply understand end users. Her combination of design thinking problem solving skills and real world experience living and working in developing countries gives her a unique perspective.

Career

U.S. Department of State J. William Fulbright Scholarship

U.S. Fulbright Scholar

Alex spent one year researching and re-designing business solutions for indigenous entrepreneurs in rural Ecuador. She focused her work on financial services designed for this marginalized market segment and alternative delivery channels. A portion of her work focused on a World Bank indigenous microenterprise development project.

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Financial Sector Deepening Project of Uganda (FSDU)

Principal Researcher

Alex served as the Principal Researcher on project to evaluate the effects of wholesale lending to Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) in Uganda. Her responsibilities included:
- conducting focus group discussions and in-depth interviews with members of SACCOs and SACCO management
- designing and executing quantitative and financial analysis of SACCO performance
- advising Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Microfinance on policies related to SACCO oversight

Career

Urban Institute

Research Assistant

Research Assistant to Dr. Marti Burt, an expert in issues related to homelessness, emergency assistance, and human services.

ideas42

Interim Director, Finance & Administration

Managing Finance and Administration during a transitional time for ideas42. Responsible for legal, HR, donor reporting, financial policies and procedures, etc.

MicroFinance Transparency

Chief Operating Officer & Vice President

MFTransparency is a global initiative to improve transparency in the provision of microfinance services. It aims to be the leader in microfinance product pricing transparency by promoting public disclosure and education. Our vision is a microfinance industry operating with healthy free market conditions where consumers and other stakeholders can make informed decisions.

As Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Alex expanded the organization from 2 staff based in the US to over 20 team members with operations on 5 continents. She trained more than 5,000 microfinance professionals in over 30 countries during her three year tenure. Alex spoke at numerous conferences on social impact, the tension between social mission and profits, financial capability of entrepreneurs and innovations in product pricing.

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ACCION International

Senior Investment Associate, Global Investments

Accion's Frontier Investments Group (FIG) is a venture equity fund that invests capital and technical expertise in companies with novel, disruptive business models with the potential of enhancing the efficiency, reach and scope of products and services for people living in poverty worldwide.

FIG invests in growth-stage, post-revenue companies that have moved beyond the seed stage and are seeking capital to bring their business models to scale. Frontier Investments Group’s work is supported by Accion’s five decades of experience in emerging markets – including feet-on-the-ground and institutional relationships in four continents and a deep bench of specialists.

Career

ACCION International

Associate Director, Marketing and Product Development

Alex worked on the Marking and Product Development team for a year on the design and development of innovative demand-driven, client-centric financial products. Her worked focused on the development of microsavings and microinsurance and employed market research strategies to understand underbanked populations.

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Microfund for Women

Lead Consultant

On this project, Alex led a team of 6 consultants to conduct a qualitative and quantitative research effort to develop two financial products for long-term financing of education in Jordan. The team conducted focus group discussions and in-depth interviews with female entrepreneurs to understand needs and behaviors. They also conducted quantitative analysis of administrative data and small sample survey data. The result of the work was the design of two financial products for the MicroFinance bank client: one long-term insurance product with payouts tailored to higher education and one long-term savings account designed to help families save for university.

Career

Columbia University - School of International and Public Affairs

MIA, Economic & Political Development

Connecticut College

BA, Economics, Latin American Studies

Dartmouth College - The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth

Summer Bridge Program