Dr. Nevan C. Hanumara

Dr. Nevan Hanumara is a research scientist in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Nevan is a native Rhode Islander and a proud graduate of both the University of Rhode Island and MIT, where he found many kindred, inquisitive spirits. He likes to take things apart and make messes, but thinks that reassembly and cleanup is always less fun!

His work at the Institute focuses on healthcare and human-centered design, with application primarily in clinical settings. He has a special interest in emerging markets, where the need for more affordable, accessible and inclusive healthcare is pressing.

Nevan’s approach is collaborative, application-driven and translational. For over a decade, he has co-taught MIT’s Medical Device Design course, which annually brings together 40+ students to work in small teams with clinicians and companies to prototype solutions to pressing healthcare challenges. Over the years he has had the privilege to work with a few hundred superb seniors and graduate students and directly mentor at least two dozen projects. This has been a source of inspiration for ongoing research projects for him and has led to deep relationships with the clinical community.

Most recently, Nevan was the project manager of the MIT’s open source Emergency Ventilator Project, which leveraged work done a decade ago in the class, to develop guidance for safe ventilator design, based off an Ambu bag. This shared publicly and used by many groups globally.

A New Englander at heart, Nevan has significant international experience in Europe, Latin America and Asia for teaching, collaboration and personal purposes. He speaks French and can read Spanish. Currently, he is working with a foundation in Santiago de Chile to develop extracurricular STEAM curricula for teenagers.

Previously, he served as member of the launch team and, subsequently, as the Program Manager of the MIT Tata Center for Technology + Design. In this role he helped guide and support, directly and indirectly, two hundred MIT graduate students and their PIs whose work focused on developing technically sophisticated solutions to challenges in emerging economies. He was primarily responsible for organizing and orienting students to work in India and spent many weeks in the filed with them.

Nevan focuses on entrepreneurship as a mechanism for technology commercialization and, in addition to his position at MIT, he advises multiple health-focused and technology startups and is a Senior Advisor to the New England Medical Innovation Center in Providence, Rhode Island. Previously, he served part-time as the Chief Science Officer of Raydiant Oximetry, Inc. an NIH, NSF and venture backed startup that is developing the world’s most powerful, sensitive and sophisticated fetal pulse oximeter.

Together, Nevan and a colleague from the MIT Sloan School have developed a curriculum targeted to empower engineering teams in multinational corporations with rapid ideation and business case development skills. Recently, they have also launched a Startup Stress Test aimed at helping early stage companies hone their pitches.