Designer of Experiences, WIRED Innovation Fellow, Keynote Speaker, Director

Nelly Ben Hayoun has a healthy disregard for the impossible; called the “Willy Wonka of design and science”, Ben Hayoun is on a mission to bring chaos, subversion and disorder to the worlds of design and science. An award-winning director and designer of experiences she works with leading scientists and engineers, to devise subversive events and experiences.

One of her many titles includes being the brains behind International Space Orchestra at NASA, an experimental and hybrid research laboratory where astronauts and space scientists have been invited to “implement, deconstruct, perform, sing, mix, modify, and design musical acts in control rooms.”

Voted by Icon Magazine as Future50,
the top 50 international designers “shaping the future”  

Her most ambitious project to date, the International Space Orchestra (ISO) is the worlds first orchestra of space scientists. A self confessed "no one", Ben Hayoun used her interminable energy and powers of persuasion, to bring together space scientists, astronauts, authors and leading musicians like Beck, Bobby Womack, Damon Albarn, Maywa Denki, Bruce Sterling and Penguin Café in a musical collaboration that was literally launched into space in 2013.

Nominated by Icon Magazine in 2013 as one of the 50 international designers “shaping the future”  Ben Hayoun’s bold design practice has investigated the empty lands of Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, 100m below ground at the Large Hadron Collider and collided atoms at SLAC. Ben Hayoun has also got stuck in a Soyuz rocket capsule in Baikonur Cosmodrome, and experienced a sonic boom in the neutrino Observatory Super K in Japan. Shortlisted by Icon magazine for best Emerging Design Practise, Ben Hayoun is a true pioneer and her work is unlike any other at this point in time - it will be a marker in design history.

Presented with the Arts Council England Exceptional Award

Fortune 500 companies around the world invite Ben Hayoun to share her unique and ground breaking approach to reimagine a new world. Finally in 2015, she was nominated for a Women of the Year Achievement Award, which rewards, since 1955, women 'who have made a significant achievement' and 'are being recognized for their strides in making the world a better place'. In her spare time Ben Hayoun is training to be an astronaut and is writing a PhD. 


  • Mattel HQ, US
  • Unilever, UK
  • Red Bull HQ, Austria
  • Airbnb, US
  • Microsoft Research Laboratory, UK
  • Google HQ, U.S
  • Mailchimp U.S
  • Wired, U.K
  • Autodesk, US
  • We Transfer, NL
  • It’s Nice That, UK
  • AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts), U.S
  • Gaité Lyrique, France
  • BBC, UK
  • Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), UK


  • Lego, Denmark
  • CityWire, UK
  • Museum of Modern Art, NYC, USA
  • British Council, UK
  • The Guardian, UK
  • National Museum, Sweden
  • Royal Geographical Society, UK
  • Design Indaba Festival, South Africa
  • SCLBits, Mexico
  • Blueprint Magazine, U.K
  • NHK TV, Japan
  • We Make Money Not Art, UK
  • XL Recordings, UK
  • Science and Technology Facility Council, UK

Nelly Ben Hayoun's titles include

WIRED Innovation Fellow 2014
Head of Experiences, We Transfer, NL & USA
Adviser to the United Nations VR Lab
Founding Director International Space Orchestra at NASA Ames Research Center, CA, USA
Designer of Experiences at the SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute, USA
Elected member of the British Interplanetary Society and of the Space Outreach and Education committee at the International Astronautical Federation
Elected Member of the British Interplanetary Society
Women in Aerospace (Europe) 2016 member
BBC consultant, Stargazing, UK
Visiting Lecturer MA Innovation Design Engineering, MA Architecture and MA Design Interactions, Royal College of Art, UK
Senior Lecturer MA Material Futures, Central Saint Martins, London, UK
Visiting professor, Unknown Fields Division, Architectural Association, London
Visiting professor, International Space University, France
Royal Geographical Society Fellow, UK

Nelly Ben Hayoun's profile by One Minute Wonder

Watch Nelly Ben Hayoun at The Next Web, Amsterdam 2016

Nelly Ben Hayoun speaks at Airbnb Design Talks in San Francisco, 2016

AIGA Design Conference, New Orleans 2015

Talks at Google series in London and Los Angeles

Nelly Ben Hayoun at WIRED 2014 conference in London 

Nelly Ben Hayoun is interviewed on Icelandic National TV

Nelly Ben Hayoun first feature film, the International Space Orchestra, watch the trailer. 

Watch the trailer for Nelly Ben Hayoun's latest film Disaster Playground

A talk by Nelly Ben Hayoun for It's Nice That at Here London 2013

An interview with Nelly Ben Hayoun on BBC Radio 4

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