Oscar Nespoli

Continuing Lecturer
Oscar Nespoli

Contact information

Biography summary

Oscar Nespoli is a licensed Professional Engineer appointed as a Continuing Lecturer in the Department of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering at the University of Waterloo. Oscar joined UWaterloo following a 23 year career in research, engineering and management practice in industry and government.

Oscar’s teaching and research interests are in the areas of creative design, design cognition, design coaching (coaching artistry) and education, and design and management practice. Oscar maintains strong industry-university relations and a commitment to remain close to design practice.

Before joining UWaterloo, Oscar was employed at L-3 Communications Wescam where he led inter-disciplinary teams toward successful development and commercialization of camera systems. Earlier in his career Oscar was employed at Department of National Defence, the Canadian Space Agency, Owens Corning Canada, and the research division of the Bata Shoe Organization.

Oscar has been a licensed Professional Engineer with Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) since 1986. He is a member of the Design Society, the Design Research Society, and founded and co-chairs an International Special Interest Group (SIG) on Design Practice.

Research interests

  • Creative Engineering Design
  • Design Cognition
  • Design Coaching and Education
  • Design Project Management Practice


  • 1984, Master's, Mechanical Engineering, University of Waterloo
  • 1981, Bachelor's, Mechanical Engineering, Queen's University


  • ME 597 - Special Topics in Mechanical Engineering
    • Taught in 2018
  • ME 680 - Advanced Design Engineering
    • Taught in 2018, 2019, 2021, 2022
  • ME 681 - Advanced Design Engineering- Design Project 1
    • Taught in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023
  • ME 682 - Advanced Design Engineering- Design Project 2
    • Taught in 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023

* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/recent publications

  • Borgianni, Y., Dixon, B., Ekwaro-Osire, S., Nespoli, O.G., Summers, J. Thomas, W. and Zeng, Y., Domain-Independent Design Theory and Methodology to Boost the Adoption of Design Methods, Journal of Integrated Design and Process Science, Jan 2023.
  • Holtta-Otto, K., Bjorklund, T., Klippert, M., Otto, K., Krause, D., Eckert, C., Nespoli, O.G., Albers, A., Facing Extreme Uncertainty - How the Onset of the COVID-19 Pandemic Influenced Product Development, International Journal of Creativity and Innovation, 2022
  • Nespoli, O.G., Hurst, A. and Gero J.S., Exploring Tutor-Student Interactions in a Novel Virtual Design Studio, Design Studies, 75, 2021
  • Cardoso, C., Hurst A., and Nespoli, O., (2020) Reflective Inquiry in Design Reviews: The Role of Question-Asking During Exchanges of Peer Feedback, International Journal of Engineering Education, 36(2), pp. 614-622.
  • Hurst A. and Nespoli O.G., Peer Review in Capstone Design Courses: An Implementation Using Progress Update Meetings, Capstone Conference Special Issue, International Journal of Engineering Education, 2015.
  • Hurst, A., Nespoli, O.G., Abdellahi, S. and Gero, J.S., “A Comparison of Design Activity of Academics and Practitioners Using the FBS Ontology: A Case Study”, International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED19), Delft, Netherlands, 2019.
  • Nespoli O.G., Hurst A. and Russell J., Facilitating Need Finding and Problem Formulation During Cooperative Workterms Through Virtual Instruction – Pilot Implementation Results, International Design Conference – DESIGN 2018, Dubrovnik, Croatia, May 2018. https://doi.org/10.21278/idc.2018.0257

Graduate studies

  • Not currently accepting applications for graduate students