“I want to develop and improve public services” was my answer to the question “What are your personal objectives to study Service Innovation and Design”. “Good luck” said the teacher and her voice was full of cheer and encouragement – I think. Although the quality of public services is relatively good in Finland there is always room for improvement.
It was my day #1 at Laurea University of Applied Sciences in September 2014 in Finland. The Master’s Degree Program in Service Innovation and Design (alongside a full-time job) was about to start. Twenty-six students from all over the world, full of energy and enthusiasm, were there to learn about customer focused service development and innovations.
On day #2 we started our first course “Design Thinking”. So my aim was to learn how to develop and improve public services and therefore I needed to learn the basics first; Design Thinking (DT) models and DT tools.
In our course we learned that there are several DT models. Tschimmel, Katja (2012, 6-10) introduces five different models. In our course we had a chance to learn more about one DT model created by Gijs van Wulfen: the FORTH innovation method.
All DT models include DT tools. Tschimmel – as well as Liedtka & Ogilvie (2011) – write that there are 10 different DT tools (as you can see from the picture above). Katja Tschimmel (2012, 11) points out that one model is not supreme compared to the others; a service development team chooses the model that best suits their purposes. In all the design processes the team will anyway go through the following three phases; inspiration, ideation and implementation (Brown, 2008).
During our study days #2 and 3 we were given a task to create a new service for better learning. In our service development process we used the following DT tools:
- Mind mapping (collected information into visual form)
- Research,visual interviews
- Moodboard, brainwriting (selected ideas with a target, developed concepts)
- Prototyping, testing ideas
- Business model in visual form (final presentation)
We did our service development practice in two days. In real life DT processes take time. You cannot and shouldn’t push someone to innovate – 16-20 weeks is an average time for a good innovation process.
Days #1-3 in my Design Studies were great; I’m full of motivation and energy – and I’m anxious to learn more! In order to develop and improve public services…
Written by Kati Shibutani
Brown, Tim 2008. Design Thinking. Harvard Business Review, June, 84-95.
Tschimmel, Katja 2012. Design Thinking as an effective Toolkit for Innovation. In: Proceedings of the XXIII ISPIM Conference: Action for Innovation: Innovating from Experience. Barcelona.
Liedtka, Jeanne & Ogilvie, Tim 2011. Designing for growth: a design thinking tool kit for managers, New York: Columbia University Press.