Conference Agenda

Overview and details of the sessions of this conference. Please select a date or location to show only sessions at that day or location. Please select a single session for detailed view (with abstracts and downloads if available).

Session Overview
5.b 1/2: Strengthening the design capabilities of professional organisations in a complex world
Friday, 21/Jun/2019:
11:10am - 12:50pm

Session Chair: Mieke van der Bijl-Brouwer
Session Chair: Frido E Smulders
Location: LDN.0.17 & 0.18
Ground floor Loughborough University London 60 capacity

Session Abstract

To be able to address the complex nature of today’s societal and economic problems, professional organisations recognise that traditional tools and approaches may not provide the required solutions. To innovate on complex challenges, many have turned to design approaches over the past decade, including both public (Bason, 2010) and private sector organisations. To increase design capabilities, these organisations have established innovation labs with designers, have recruited designers in strategic positions, and/or have started building the design capabilities of existing staff through educational programs, often provided by design consultancies.
So far there is limited evidence of the impact of design capability building within these sectors, although many seem to agree that workshops and short courses in design thinking do not lead to the required change. Furthermore, capability building programs do not always seem to build on contemporary educational and social theories of workplace learning, which highlight the social and complex nature of how professionals learn (Hager, 2011; Orlikowski, 2002).
This situation is further complicated by the fact that design for complex societal problems differs from traditional design practices, and should be adapted to the needs of this ‘target field’ (Buchanan, 2015; Dorst ,2015). What is it then that professional organisations learn from design? And how can design capability be increased in these organisations (see e.g. Price, Wrigley, & Matthews, 2018)? In this track we are inviting contributions about increasing design capability and workplace learning within organisations. Topics include but are not limited to:
● Case studies of capability building in design in public/private innovation
● Theories of transdisciplinary design pedagogy & workplace learning
● Learning between organisations through networks and communities of practice
● Required adaptations of design practices to the public/private sector

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11:10am - 11:35am

Understanding the current practice of embedding design in government: limitations and opportunities

Ahmee Kim, Mieke van der Bijl-Brouwer

Delft University of Technology, Netherlands, The

Design is today suggested as an alternative way of working in government contexts. Many developed nations are trying to embed design in their public organizations. Yet recent studies have shown that design is not easily permeating into everyday practice of public organizations. This research therefore aims to understand what the current practice of design-embedding in government is like and its limitations by interviewing six experts in the design for government field. The research findings reveal that the changes created by the current design-embedding practice in government are not being actively sustained or amplified. Based on an understanding of organisations as complex systems, we suggest a further practice of design-embedding in which designers steward and stimulate design-led change energy within public organizations. This study shows that embedding design capability in professional organizations is more about design-led organizational change than passing on a design skillset to the organizational members.

Track 5.b-Understanding the current practice of embedding design-301Kim_a.pdf

11:35am - 12:00pm

Design Capability for Science-based Innovation

Stefanie Rothkötter1,2, Craig C. Garner2,3, Sándor Vajna4

1Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany; 2German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) Berlin, Germany; 3Charité Medical University Berlin, Germany; 4Professor emeritus of Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany

In light of a growing research interest in the innovation potential that lies at the intersection of design, technology, and science, this paper offers a literature review of design initiatives centered on scientific discovery and invention. The focus of this paper is on evidence of design capabilities in the academic research environment. The results are structured along the Four Orders of Design, with examples of design-in-science initiatives ranging from (1) the design of scientific figures and (2) laboratory devices using new technology to (3) interactions in design workshops for scientists and (4) interdisciplinary design labs. While design capabilities have appeared in all four orders of design, there are barriers and cultural constraints that have to be taken into account for working at or researching these creative intersections. Modes of design integration and potentially necessary adaptations of design practice are therefore also highlighted.

Track 5.b-Design Capability for Science-based Innovation-275Rothkötter_a.pdf

12:00pm - 12:25pm

The adaptation of design thinking in auditing

Linda Meijer-Wassenaar, Diny van Est

The Netherlands Court of Audit

How can a supreme audit institution (SAI) use design thinking in auditing? SAIs audit the way taxpayers’ money is collected and spent. Adding design thinking to their activities is not to be taken lightly. SAIs independently check whether public organizations have done the right things in the right way, but the organizations might not be willing to act upon a SAI’s recommendations. Can you imagine the role of design in audits? In this paper we share our experiences of some design approaches in the work of one SAI: the Netherlands Court of Audit (NCA). Design thinking needs to be adapted (Dorst, 2015a) before it can be used by SAIs such as the NCA in order to reflect their independent, autonomous status. To dive deeper into design thinking, Buchanan’s design framework (2015) and different ways of reasoning (Dorst, 2015b) are used to explore how design thinking can be adapted for audits.

Track 5.b-The adaptation of design thinking in auditing-362Meijer-Wassenaar_a.pdf

12:25pm - 12:50pm

Building Design Capabilities in Academic Libraries

Andrea Alessandro Gasparini

University of Oslo, Norway

While design-led innovation may have huge potential to change both tangible outcomes of design, such as products and services, and the intangible ones such as values, mindsets and organizational cultures, the approach has not been broadly investigated in the organizational settings, especially when it comes to building in-house design capabilities. The paper reflects on both practical and theoretical concerns around building of design capabilities in academic libraries. The making and sustaining design capabilities was supported by design interventions in the form of design workshops and other design activities, and repeated re-enforcements of constructivist and experiential organizational learning leading to integration of design proto practices with daily routines and established work practices. The findings are articulated as a set of guidelines toward building design capabilities in academic libraries through design thinking. At the conceptual level, the work highlights the importance of openness, dialogical spaces and temporal aspects of such processes.

Track 5.b-Building Design Capabilities in Academic Libraries-376Gasparini_a.pdf

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