Schaaf is an artist and designer who was originally trained in the U.S. as a product designer and worked for the next ten years developing a diverse range of products for such high-profile clients as Dell, Siemens, Black and Decker and Johnson & Johnson. While studying for his Masters in Industrial Design he began a career in design education and worked as a research fellow on a $2.5M federally-funded project through the Department for Transportation to develop computer-based tools for concurrent design and assessment of advanced automobile interfaces.
After completing his Masters in Industrial Design at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Schaaf moved to the United Kingdom, where he has taught and developed new curricula across a range of programs at the University of Salford, Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication, and most recently at Buckinghamshire New University where he has currently been developing a new Master of Arts in Design for the Internet of Things (IoT) graduate degree program.
Schaaf’s research and professional interests lie in developing new creative tools and design methods and he has spoken widely across Europe, Japan, China and South Korea on these topics.
Schaaf earned his Bachelor of Environmental Design in Product from North Carolina State University (’82) and his Masters of Industrial Design from the University of the Arts (’95).