Institute for Human Centered Design

Dedicated to enhancing the experiences
of people of all ages, abilities, and cultures
through excellence in design.
Let's Work Together

The Changing Reality of Disability in America: 2020

This documentary film and research project reexamines the experience of disability in America, and shines a light on the stories of those all too often left behind. Watch the documentary below and read the full research report.


An education lecture at IHCD


Opportunities for learning through IHCD include a Lunch & Learn series, trainings, workshops and events. Internship and fellowship opportunities are also available all-year-round.

People discussing design


Our scope for consulting includes, among others, plan reviews, assessment of accessibility in the built environment and testing of digital and web accessibility.

Employees designing on computers


IHCD works with entrepreneurs, designers and businesses to evaluate concepts, prototypes or existing designs to assess usability for the widest possible spectrum of people.

A blind user testing a prototype


IHCD has an established database of user/experts, chosen for each opportunity to find the best match between the person and the project.


Inclusive Design

Inclusive design is design that works for the widest sepctrum of users without the need for specialized adaptation, It centers around the user experience with a focus on social sustainability. IHCD uses the World Health Organization’s Definition of Disability as the foundation for our consulting and research work in the field and in our user/expert lab. We believe that good design must work not only for as many users as possible, but also enhance everyone’s experience.

Inclusive Design
a woman reading about inclusive design in the home

News & Events

Marsha Maytum a women with milky-colored skin and short blonde hair tucked behind her ears. She is wearing black square frame glasses and a bright smile.

Remembering Marsha Maytum: Architect and Inclusive Design Advocate

Renowned architect Marsha Maytum, co-founder of Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects (LMSA), passed away on February 10 at the age of 69 after bravely battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). While celebrated for her groundbreaking work in green design, Maytum's legacy extends far beyond her…

The Institute for Human Centered Design logo with slogan Designing Inclusively, Educating Globally

RSVP for Our Webcast on Feb. 22, 2024

With this webcast, IHCD introduces an expanded education commitment. We plan to roll out a mix of webcasts, podcasts, interviews, and case studies this year. We believe that sharing stories and real experience delivers the most impact.

Chris Downey lost his sight…

Flyer for ANFA John P. Eberhard Student Design Competition

John P. Eberhard Student Design Competition

In recognition of the 20th anniversary of the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture, ANFA will host a design competition honoring one of its key founding members and IHCD champion, John P. Eberhard, FAIA. The goal of the competition is to create greater interest and understanding of the…

teenage girl, with brown skin and long braids, sits at her desk while using her smartphone

Research Study Invitation: Do you teach blind or low-vision middle school students?

Invitation for blind or low-vision middle school students to participate in an accessible interactive fiction story on iPad/iPhone.

For blind students, this is an audio game. For low-vision students, it's an audio game with images. Developed by a research team, the game aids in…

News & Events

User/Expert Lab

A user/expert is a person who has developed expertise by means of their lived experience in dealing with the challenges of the environment due to a physical, sensory or cognitive functional limitation. IHCD has an established database of user/experts who range from adolescents to people in their ‘80s. Participants help review the usability and accessibility of physical environments as well as products, services and new technologies.

two blind users sitting on a couch

New England ADA Center

IHCD is home to the New England ADA Center; the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a comprehensive federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination in all aspects of life on the basis of disability. There are five Titles within the ADA that outline rights and responsibilities of employers, state and local government, businesses and non-profits, architects and designers and individuals and advocates, and IHCD strives to help customers reach standards set by these titles.

ADA 30th anniversary logo
New England ADA

About Us

A blind man reading with his dog


We are committed to advancing the role of design in expanding opportunity and enhancing experience for people of all ages, abilities and cultures through excellence in design.

Valerie Fletcher with a group of students


IHCD has built a large family of friends and allies over 30 years, and we are proud to say that this inner circle is characterized by both longevity of commitment and an appetite for the next frontier.

The outside view on IHCD's offices


IHCD is located at 560 Harrison Ave, Unit 401, Boston, MA 02114.

Visit the directions page for more detailed directions.

Sherll, IHCD's administrative assistant answering the phone.


1 (617) 695-1225 (v/tty)

Fax: 1 (617) 482-8099

About Us