What I Do

My area of expertise is behavior design where I apply systematic ways to shift human behavior for business and societal outcomes.

I draw on academic research ranging from game design and persuasive technology to neuroscience to deliver the right real-world results, whether it’s adoption of new products, public health, cultural transformation, humanitarian relief, citizen diplomacy, achieving impact goals, or customer experience.

Throughout my career, I have worked with companies, boards, non-profits and communities on

  • Establishing inclusive and diverse entrepreneurial ventures and ecosystems for women and POC
  • Incubating and investing in new companies and developing new entrepreneurial talent
  • Developing an innovative culture
  • Developing social impact products, services, and ventures
  • Creating corporate innovation labs
  • Designing behavior programs to increase employee satisfaction and customer loyalty.
  • Reimagining extraordinary customer experiences
  • Developing new products and services to meet ESG and UN SDG goals

My professional activities include time spent in academia and corporate settings.

I lead the Peace Innovation Lab at Stanford, The Peace Innovation Institute The Hague, and am a researcher in the Game Design Thinking research group. I am a certified trainer under BJ Fogg and a past member of the BJ Fogg’s Behavior Design Lab.

My professional engagements include such names as City of The Hague, Coca-Cola, Deloitte, Horsley Bridge Partners, IDEO, Innogy, Ricoh Innovations, Santander Bank, Storebrand, and Xerox Parc.

Blog

How to Innovate for an Ethical Future

The Corporate Innovation Podcast, presented by Singularity University, goes beyond the “disrupt or die” headlines and explores how world-leading innovators truly create transformation, growth, and impact. Margarita joined Kris Østergaard, the Co-Founder of SingularityU Nordic and host of the Corporate Innovation podcast in a conversation on the relationship between ethics and innovation, the dilemmas businesses …

Behavioral Technologies to influence Actions for the Common Good

I had the pleasure of being interviewed on Jeff Saperstein’s Interconnected Individuals Podcast last November. I have known Jeff for many years and give an annual lecture to his students at San Francisco State University on the principles of behavior design and persuasive technology in communications. Show notes are here: Jeff Saperstein interviews Margarita Quihuis, …

Testimonials

Margarita is an extraordinary talent, combining entrepreneurial zeal and energy with an ability to visualize and design web experiences. She successfully launched our Ricoh Innovations Lab with a first offering, ICandy, evangelizing this through both an online and physical presence at key user and developer forums. She is an expert on social networking and GenY …

Peter Hart, Ricoh Innovations

Margarita is a spectacular mentor and phenomenal group leader. She is highly organized, excellent at motivating team members and managing complex projects. As a mentor, she is both understanding of setbacks and always finds a creative and effective way to overcome any obstacle. I highly recommend her for any sort of project requiring a systems …

Dave Miller, Stanford University

Margarita is a top shelf speaker. I heard her speak at twice onNetworking. She is an informative, insightful and very powerfulpresenter. I loved her sense of humor and interactive, easy style.

Conchita Franco Serri, Caroami

Margarita has brought new energy to the organization. She’s done a fantastic job in building the membership and expanding the organization’s reach.

Steve Montoya, Hispanic-Net

I have known Margarita for many years and had the opportunityto work with her on several projects at Hispanic-Net and other ventures. She has made a major impact since joining our Board by leading our Marketing efforts with her expertise, teamwork and sense of urgency.

Walter Tijiboy, Hispanic-Net

Margarita mentored the Reuters fellows and was invited to be a featured speaker on microfinance and the Mexican diapsora. She immediately grasps the salient points of a technology or project. She coached fellows on pitchingtheir ideas, improving immeasurably our presentation skills and opportunities. Margarita’s insights into the opportunties and user needs for microfinance are invaluable.

Laura Cuozzo Guarnotta, Google

Margarita led the WTC [Astia] from inception to international reknown. Accomplishments: selection of startups(some became industry leaders),high press profile, events (eg. technology roundtable with Hilary Clinton,) facilitating $80 million in venture capital and building a network of women in technology. During the blistering pace she never once lost her sense of humor and warm smile.

Mona Lisa Wallace, startup founder, Astia incubator

Margarita is a unique person in Silicon valley who approached her business dealings with a personal touch. Her ability to cut through to the emotional heart of the matter and the underlying dynamics between team members complements her business savvy and strong understanding of markets and business models. Her global vision and concern for the …

Sameer Bhatia, startup founder, NewVista Capital portfolio

Margarita is a professional who has the technology and organizational vision of a CEO, the detailed operational focus of a COO and the customer-focus of a customer care rep. A rare combination of successful qualities.

Fritz Jordan

From the moment we met as Fellows at Stanford, Margarita stood out as one of the very few Venture Capitalists who understood that Social Capital was far more valuable, important, and (potentially) abundant than financial capital as a force for good in the world.  Since that time, Margarita has been an invaluable advisor and thoughtful …

Greg Wolff, Unamesa