Ashwini Deshpande
Co-founder, Director - Elephant

A 1989 graduate of National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India Ashwini is the co-founder of Elephant, India's largest independent integrated design consultancy with offices in India & Singapore.

Ashwini is part of the core group that steers the Design Alliance Asia consortium. She is also an active founding member of the Association of Designers of India.

She has done award-winning work for global brands in automobile, engineering, FMCG, food service, healthcare & personal care segments. Some of the awards include Global ReBrand 100 (USA), Asiastar for Packagig Excellence (Singapore), A’Design Awards (Italy), Best of the Best at CII Design Excellence, Designomics, The India Story award etc

Ashwini was invited by Rockefeller Foundation to participate in a global Social Impact summit and by Danish Design Foundation to partner with Copenhagen Co-creation Agenda.

She has lectured across more than 20 countries including icograda Design week in Vancouver & Istanbul, Business of Design week in Hong Kong and International Design Congress at Mexico as well as in South Korea more recently.

She has been a jury member on Cannes Lions (France), Global ReBrand 100 (USA), Spikes Asia (Singapore), Design for Asia (HK), Kyiv International Advertising Festival (Ukrain) & Design for Change (India) Awards and was part of the International A’Design Awards (Italy) jury this year.

As a key member of The Design Alliance Asia consortium, she has edited Colours of Asia book that was published in Hong Kong. This project was awarded Design for Asia Special Culture Award by the Hong Kong government.

Most recently, Ashwini was awarded a place among 50 Most Influential Women in Media in India by Impact magazine in 2017 for the third consecutive year.

She also received Amrutwel Foundation’s SuperWoman 2017 Award at the hands of Mayor of Pune city and Leader of the Decade Award by All Ladies League at the Women Economic Forum in Delhi.

She mentors start-up teams from the advisory board of Indian Institute of Management CIIE programme. She is also mentor to the Creanara community & Vedica Scholars Programme. She has recently been inducted on the Advisory Board of School of Design, Pearl Academy.


Elephant is India's largest independent integrated design consultancy with offices in India & Singapore. Founded in 1989 when design profession was nascent in India, Elephant was instrumental in establishing the “business of design” with their user-centric approach & disruptive problem solving processes.

Some of the most leading & innovative companies in FMCG, Entertainment, e-commerce, Pharma, Banking, Automotive & Healthcare partner with Elephant for developing brands, products & experiences.

The client list includes Asian Paints, Axis Bank, Benett University, Britannia, Chennai Open Tennis League, Emami, Indian Super League, L’Oreal, Mercedes Benz, MTR Foods, Nirlep, Nissan Motors, Organic India, Paper Boat, Relaxo, Symphony, Tata Salt, Tata CliQ, Ultimate Table Tennis League, Viacom18, Wipro etc.

India’ leading financial daily The Economic Times – Brand Equity has acknowledged Elephant among Best Design Agencies consistently since 2007.

Ashwini Deshpande
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