Herbert Simon, in the "Sciences of the Artificial" (MIT Press, 1969) has defined "design" as the "transformation of existing conditions into preferred ones" (p. 55). Design thinking is, then, always linked to an improved future. Unlike critical thinking, which is a process of analysis and is associated with the 'breaking down' of ideas, design thinking is a creative process based around the 'building up' of ideas. There are no judgments in design thinking. This eliminates the fear of failure and encourages maximum input and participation. Wild ideas are welcome, since these often lead to the most creative solutions.
Everyone is a designer, and design thinking is a way to apply design methodologies to any of life's situations.
The design process[edit | edit source]
Design thinking is a process for practical, creative resolution of problems or issues.
The stages of this process are suggested as:
Define | Research | Ideate | Prototype | Choose | Implement | Learn
Within these seven steps, problems can be framed, the right questions can be asked, more ideas can be created, and the best answers can be chosen. The steps aren't linear; they can occur simultaneously or be repeated.
Although design is always subject to personal taste, design thinkers share a common set of values that drive innovation: these values are mainly creativity, ambidextrous thinking, teamwork, end-user focus, curiosity.
There is considerable academic interest in understanding design thinking or design cognition, including an ongoing series of symposia on 'research in design thinking'. 
Stages[edit | edit source]
Define[edit | edit source]
- Decide what issue you are trying to resolve.
- Agree on who the audience is.
- Prioritize this project in terms of urgency.
- Determine what will make this project successful.
- Establish a glossary of terms.
Research[edit | edit source]
- Review the history of the issue; remember any existing obstacles.
- Collect examples of other attempts to solve the same issue.
- Note the project supporters, investors, and critics.
- Talk to your end-users, that brings you the most fruitful ideas for later design
- Take into account thought leaders opinion
Ideate[edit | edit source]
- Identify the needs and motivations of your end-users.
- Generate as many ideas as possible to serve these identified needs
- Log your brainstorming session.
- Do not judge or debate ideas.
- During branstorming, have one conversation at a time
Prototype[edit | edit source]
- Combine, expand, and refine ideas.
- Create multiple drafts.
- Seek feedback from a diverse group of people, include your end users.
- Present a selection of ideas to the client.
- Reserve judgment and maintain neutrality.
Choose[edit | edit source]
- Review the objective.
- Set aside emotion and ownership of ideas.
- Remember: the most practical solution isn't always the best.
- Select the powerful ideas.
Implement[edit | edit source]
- Assign tasks.
- Deliver to client.
Learn[edit | edit source]
- Gather feedback from the consumer.
- Determine if the solution met its goals.
- Discuss what could be improved.
- Measure success; collect data.
See also[edit | edit source]
[edit | edit source]
- Design Thinking Red Hat Magazine, May 2006
- The Empathy Economy BusinessWeek, March 8, 2005
- Innovation through Design Thinking lecture by Timothy Brown (video)
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