Aaron Soto-Karlin

Customer Research & Development Expert

Aaron is a UX researcher, innovation consultant, and media strategist with twelve years of experience in business, government, and nonprofits in the United States, Central, and South America. He’s carved out a niche in product discovery through research, design thinking, and dramatic storytelling with expertise in emerging markets.

For Brazilian airframe manufacturer Embraer, Aaron launched and managed design research for the company’s first human-centered innovation lab. There, he drove customer development on a new multi-sided B2B marketplace for unplanned aircraft maintenance, while also guiding the redesign of software for aircraft warranty administration and parts management. For Mastercard, he implemented the US portion of a global study to innovate digital payment products for under-banked and unbanked consumers.

He devoted the first seven years of his career to design research, project management, and multi-stakeholder facilitation in international government programs. He led research on the redesign of two nationwide entrepreneurship programs for the Mexican Land Ministry. With Universidad Chapingo, Aaron designed, launched, and managed an incubator for agriculture and forest businesses across 30+ remote Mexican villages that increased mean village revenue by 50%. Leading a coalition financed by USAID, Aaron crafted and implemented a multi-channel communications campaign to humanize a landmark carbon credit deal between the governments of Brazil and California. On the same theme, he conceived, researched, and produced the science policy documentary, “Carbon Trade” for public release Q1 2020.

Upon graduating, he won a Fulbright Fellowship in Anthropology to analyze a large drug-discovery partnership between GlaxoSmithKline, the National Institutes of Health, and indigenous healthcare-providers. During undergrad, Aaron was honored to work with Dr. Roland Griffiths and the Johns Hopkins Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit during groundbreaking research on the health impacts of primary mystical experiences. He received a BA in Anthropology from The Johns Hopkins University and a Fulbright Fellowship in Anthropology to Mexico

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