Tag Archive | palvelumuotoilu

Designers as political changemakers

What are the commonly stated wicked problems and what can we do about them?

A common denominator for the so-called wicked problems is that they all have complex connections to multiple sectors of human societies and they cannot be solved easily, if at all. Wicked problem can also be a problem whose complexity means that it has no determinable stopping point at all (Tonkinwise & Cameron 2015). Moreover, because of complex interdependencies, the effort to solve one aspect of a wicked problem may reveal or create other problems. A common feature is that there are different opinions among the stakeholders on the content of the wicked problem and how it should be addressed.

Examples of wicked problems include climate change, unemployment, healthcare, international drug trafficking, nuclear weapons, waste, social injustice, an also the most recent global threat, the COVID-19 pandemic. They are more difficult than just complex problems and thus require different approach.

To learn more about these interesting macro-level challenges, I participated online in the public defense of Mari Suoheimo`s Ph.D. dissertation entitled ““Approaching Wicked Problems in Service Design”, in which she examines the challenges that wicked problems pose to service design and proposes tools to fight them. The opponent, Professor Mikko Koria from Loughborough University, London, led the discussion with his insightful questions and remarks.

Sometimes you need to say the obvious aloud

We can change normal problem to be a wicked one. As a concrete example Mari Suoheimo mentioned the making of an envelope – it`s a normal problem until we decide to make an envelope without any environmental impact, then it becomes a wicked problem.

There is lots of talk of wicked problems, and also it is common to hear that at the end all problems are wicked, or that a solution exists to every wicked problem. This is not true. Instead, the tools that are used to solve normal problems, are sometimes used in trying to solve wicked problems. Obviously, this doesn`t work, and according to some contributors, too simple tools may even complicate the problem-solving processes if applied to wicked problems. If a solution is found to one part of the problem, it can have deep influence on other problems and their possible solutions. As Suoheimo stated: simple tools seek to find a solution, while complex tools seek to understand the problem.

The most essential contribution of Suoheimo`s Ph.D. research to the field of Service Design is to increase our understanding on how we should deal with macro-level problems and how service design can be used to tackle these big and complex problems. One of the most important findings is that service designers do have a role in combating wicked problems; they know how to facilitate the process, they do understand the importance of collaboration and they do have tools to tackle wicked problems. However, even though you would have appropriate tools, the process is never simple, nor easy, and it always requires the participation of several actors. As Professor Koria cited the dissertation “Addressing wicked problems can lead to painful processes”.

Suoheimo`s most important concrete contribution is the Iceberg Model of Design Problems, that Suoheimo developed together with her colleagues. The model is an excellent visualization and helps service designers to understand the different levels of complexity and to choose the right approach and appropriate tools for each level. Besides service design, this model can be utilized in change design, social design and sustainable development design.

Stop project-thinking!

According to Suoheimo, it became evident during her study that wicked problems are always political. Complex social problems are entering more and more into the field of service design and topics require interdisciplinary approach more than before. Designers are good at zooming in and out of problems. It is not a coincidence that service design and collaboration are strong in Nordic countries where also democracy is highly valued and widely applied.

When trying to solve wicked problems, the role of the designer is to facilitate the collaboration and make sure that the problems are viewed holistically. Professor Koria challenged Suoheimo and asked her what does collaboration actually mean if it is not seeking to find a solution. According to Suoheimo it means doing together, as against doing from top to down. It`s about going against power structures. Designers can indeed be political changemakers.

Due to their nature, wicked problems should not be thought of as short-time projects. Wicked problems are often macro-level challenges and are influenced by political decision-making and regulated by national and international legislation. There should be a long-term commitment to solving wicked problems, and also long-term financing. The question is, how do we guarantee sufficient political and financial support to service design in their work with wicked problems?

As Professor Koria stated at the end: this thesis raises more questions than it answers, which is a positive (but hopefully not wicked) problem. What is does is that it definitely leaves room for more research and contributions from scientists and service designers.

-Laura Ekholm

References:

Mari Suoheimo 2020: ”Approaching Wicked Problems in Service Design”. Acta electronica Universitatis Lapponiensis 286, ISBN 978-952-337-223-8, ISSN 1796-6310, Lapin yliopisto, Rovaniemi 2020. http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-337-223-8

Tonkinwise, Cameron 2015: “Design for Transitions – from and to what?”. Academia.edu. Retrieved 9 November 2017.

Why every problem solver needs design thinking

You might have heard of design thinking in business context and its possible perks. A design thinking approach is usually chosen when there’s a need for new inventions, growth or increasing satisfaction. Design thinking is the way designers think – putting human needs in the centre of development and creating engaging and inspiring solutions. Design means an invention or a solution to a problem. Without inventions, there’s no growth. That is why you should get involved.


Design thinking can be taught and learned, it’s not a personality trait 

In Dunne & Martins (2006) article they refer to the problem that the word design withholds. Usually the word design is associated with product development or fashion and it is seen as unrelated to the business world. Contentwise design thinkers use the same business tools, like KPI´s and ROI´s, but they always add the question “In service of what?”. 

Another reason experts do not embrace design thinking is the idea that design means creativity. We, as a society, tend to categorise people as talented or untalented in different areas, ourselves included. But people are not born leaders, analysts, designers or rockstars – you need to learn the competences! Creativity and design thinking can be taught, and you can learn them.


The human-centric way to solve problems

First you need to understand the why and then you can learn the how

According to Liedtka & Ogilvie (2011) the whole point of design thinking is to learn a new, systematic approach to problem solving. If you want to compete in the same market in few years, you need to grow and build resilience – you need to innovate. If the innovations are made internally, inside an organisation, a team, or even worse, inside someone’s head, you are heading to trouble. 

Most experts know the straightforward way of problem solving: define the problem, identify various solutions, analyse each and pick the best one (Liedtka & Ogilvie, 2011). Traditional problem solving can be seen as a linear process. It follows a process of build-measure-learn, focusing on the building. 

The traditional approach is problematic. It’s optimistic with no proof of the solution delivering great value. The process is cold and clean and all the learning about the solution comes afterwards (Liedtka & Oglivie, 2011). 

In a design process you turn the roles other way around, learn-build-measure, focusing on the learning. A design process is never linear and it consists of multiple failures and iterations (Brown, 2018).

The process aims in discovering genuine human needs and developing specific solutions. It all starts from empathy – trying to imagine what others think (Liedkta & Oglivie, 2011). Others meaning your customers, team members, users or partners. As they say, they are not numbers! They are always real people with real emotions, problems and personal targets. A design process creates solutions that inspire through true engagement and emotional connection. 

Learning design thinking doesn’t just mean learning a new set of tools. It also means learning to collect and analyse large quantities of data, learning to think what might be instead of is, learning to manage the feeling of uncertainty and collaborating with many new parties (Liedtka & Oglivie, 2011).


Why haven’t all organisations embraced design thinking?
 

Organisations with new innovations and best customer and employee experiences recruit the best experts and dominate the market. Still human-centricity is fairly rare. 

Comparing the two approaches presented, design process can seem slower. When the emphasis is in the beginning of the project, where all the learning and value creation systems are mapped, the project will not provide solutions as fast as the traditional approach. This is why I’ve seen multiple projects crumble under the feeling uncertainty and change to the traditional approach.


Where next? 

Now that you have some understanding of the why, you can start expanding your personal tool kit with new, collaborative tools.


Written by: Elina

References: 

Brown, Tim (2008) Design Thinking. Harvard Business Review, June, 84-95.

Dunne, D. & Martin, R. (2006) Design Thinking and How It Will Change Management Education: An Interview and Discussion. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 2006, Vol. 5, No. 4, 512–52.

Liedtka, Jeanne & Ogilvie, Tim (2011). Designing for growth: a design thinking tool kit for managers, New York: Columbia University Press.

Tschimmel, K. (2020). Design Thinking Masterclass, Laurea.

Getting in the mood for Design Thinking

As far as Design Thinking goes, I must confess to being quite the “newbie”. Having only recently been enlightened to the magical world of service design, innovation and co-creation, I was excited to learn of the many different models that the design thinking world has to offer.

Katja Tschimmel describes the similarities and differences of the models in both her article “Design Thinking as an effective Toolkit for Innovation” as well as in the research report D-think. These include IDEO’s 3 I model (Inspiration, Ideation, Implementation), IDEO’s HCD model (human-centred design, Hearing, Creating, Delivering), the models of the d.school (Hasso-Plattner Institute and Stanford University), the Double-Diamond model of the British Council, and the DT toolkit for Educators. Mindshake’s E6 model was also introduced, and I got the opportunity to try it out myself during the course.file-25-09-16-17-59-47-1

During the class sessions, I got a glimpse of how the design thinking process could be applied to solve student-related issues. There was no lack of empathy during this task, as we all dived into tackling issues concerning thesis stress, time-management issues and networking needs.  We grouped ourselves into small multidisciplinary teams, and our team went through a the Design Thinking process to come up with our final conclusion; a service called “Matchup”. It was a service to tackle the issue of networking within our SID group.  The idea actually won!

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Feel the Energy of Shaking Minds

We had pleasure to participate on two day design thinking (DT) study module. These days were full of innovative thinking instructed by two lovely ladies from Portugal; Dr. Katja Tschimmel (Design Professor, ESAD Portugal, developer of DT model EVOLUTION 6² ) and Mariana Valenca (Lecturer in Design thinking, ESAD Portugal). They started with introducing some of the most popular design thinking modules. (Presented below)
We got to know their company Mindshake (http://mindshake.pt/design_thinking) and the Design Model that they have developed, called EVOLUTION 6². We got to do some hands-on training as Mariana Valenca kindly familiarized us through their DT model step by step. This was very interesting, challenging and made our minds more innovative. We work in groups leading by Mariana and here are few pictures from those days and what we made.

 

 EVOLUTION 6²       –Mindshake Design Thinking model

 Phases:  Emergence, Emphathy, Experimentation, Elaboration, Exposition, Extension

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First phase Emergence we experienced the model by doing ‘intent statement’ and  ‘opportunity  mind map’. In this first phase the goal is to identificate of an opportunity.

 

 

 

 

On Experimentation phase we had a lot of fun with legos! In this phase you generate ideas and develop concepts.

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On Elaboration phase we worked with ‘service blueprint’. Phases meaning is to work on material and semantic solutions.

 

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On Exposition phase we made ‘a visual business model’. Meaning of this phase is communicating the new concept and solutions.

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Design Thinking Models

Here are briefly presented few of the most applied Design Thinking tools that are created. These model are presented widely on Katja Tschimmels research article. (Tschimmel, K. (2012). Design Thinking as an effective Toolkit for Innovation)

 

Picture 1)
IDEO’s 3 I model (Created in 2001)
Inspiration
At this phase designers needs to identificate context by observing and completing design research.

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Ideation
Phases meaning is to brainstorming process and encourage visual concepts so that complex ideas could be understood.
Implementation
The core of this stage is prototyping. After creating the final product/service there is a need to develop a communication strategy to help communication inside and outside the organization.

 

Picture 2)
IDEO has also launched HCD model which has double meaning as:
Human Centered Design

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and
Hear
Design team will collect data from people and prepare and conduct field research.
Create
Thinking change from concrete to more abstract identifying themes and opportunities and then back to concrete thinking with solutions and prototypes.
Deliver
Realize the solutions and launch them in to the world.
https://www.ideo.com/work/human-centered-design-toolkit/

 

Picture 3)
Hasso-Plattner Institutes Design Thinking model:

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 http://www.hpi.uni-potsdam.de/d_school/design_thinking/components.html?L=
This model is based on IDEO’s process experience and part of it is very similar with IDEO’s 3 I model
The DT process is visualized in six steps, connected by curved lines indicating that each step is performed in iterative loops. First phase Understand is about gathering information through secondary research. Second phase Observe includes collecting insights about the users’ needs. The insights are shared and synthesized visually in the third, Point of view, phase. Fourth phase, Ideate corresponds with IDEO 3 I stage ideation (picture 1). Last two phases, Prototype and Test contains same frames as IDEOs 3 I stage implementation (picture 1).

 

Picture 4)
British Council has developed a design process model in 2005 called The 4 D or Double Diamond.

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On discover phase designer searches new insights and opportunities. The second phase, define, works as a filter for the first phase where insights are selected and discarded. In third, develop,stage designed solutions are developed and tested using Design Thinking tools, like brainstorming, sketches and prototypes. In the last, deliver, stage the final concept undergo final testing, producing and finally launching.
http://www.designcouncil.org.uk/
Katja Tschimmel writes in her ‘Design Thinking as an Effective Toolkit for Innovation’ research article that there is not exactly best DT process model, innovation managers should choose their model depending their disciplinary background and their personal taste. In this same research article Katja Tschimmel finds that IDEO’s 3 I model (picture 1) would exclude essential moments of the design process, even though it is easy memorable name and the first model on the market. Double diamond model (picture 4) is the most complete one and reason for that could be that it is designed for designers’ use. Other models which are presented here are produced for business and management in focus.
This research article is very important from my point of view. It tells us main points of the most important DT models and a bit of history of developing these models. This kind of information in a nutshell brings us closer to understand how new models are build up and how important these phases for example in EVOLUTION 6² model are. In my opinion Katja Tschimmel writes about design thinking in the way that we all could develop our creative processes trough DT model.

 

Design Thinking by Nigel Cross

I can recommend Nigel Cross’ book Design Thinking (2011). Book includes a lot of examples how designers works in different fields. Trough researches we can familiarize ourselves in designers way of thinking and their motivation for design work. Cross has taken designers interviews part of his research. One main relevance arising from interviews among designers is that successful designers are sensitive to nuances in their environments and their awareness is higher than average people have.
Cross writes about different case studies from teamwork and what kind of possibilities and problems arises from it comparing to work independently. With these case studies reader can really understand designers way of thinking and working. Cross gives examples between novice and expert designer and more importantly how we all can improve our creativity.
To all of us, remember Design thinking is a mindset which can be developed.
Written by Pinja Suonpää

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Sources:
Tschimmel, Katja 2012. Design Thinking as an Effective Toolkit for Innovation in Proceedings of the XXIII ISPIM Conference: Action for Innovation from Experience.
Cross, Nigel 2011. Design thinking: understanding how designers think and work. Oxford: Berg Publishers.

Public and Private Sector into Cooperation for Better Services and Innovations

I attended a seminar organised by CIDe Cluster Finland in Laurea´s Tikkurila campus. CIDe Cluster is a joint project of Laurea University of Applied Sciences and Vantaan Innovaatioinstituutti Oy (Innovation Institute of Vantaa, Inc.). It focuses on the development of products and services promoting good care and rehabilitation. CIDe Cluster brings together health care and well-being companies, public sector organizations and other community players to create business development and innovation know-how. CIDe Cluster offers their partners networking events and welfare business and welfare technology trainings.

Don’t fear the restructuring

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Jari Koskinen, the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorites

CEO Jari Koskinen of the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities opened his speech by saying that the Finnish administrative structure is moving towards the European model – state, autonomous areas (countries) and municipalities – with the new Social welfare and Healthcare reform. His opinion is that when planning those reforms, one should keep in mind the number of inhabitants in Finland. Not only was he comparing Finland to France where he, still as a spokesman of the Päijät-Häme region, wanted to create a partnership with one of the northern regions of France, but while the Finnish one had 200,000 residents, the French equivalent had over four million! Understandable, the French were not enthusiastic about a joint action. He also compared the Finnish regions with one another – Keski-Pohjamaa having 70,000 inhabitants, and Uusimaa getting close to two million! His message was “How do you divide the responsibilities in the upcoming reform if the autonomous regions aren´t homogenous?” He noted that there are  20 cities in Finland that each have a larger population than the entire region of Keski-Pohjamaa.

He had more questions to which he would want answers from the new reform policy makers. The municipalities own real estates and if the responsibilities for health care are transferred from them to the autonomous regions, will the latter purchase those properties from the municipalities? If so, will they pay the market price? How to arrange it so that nobody suffers because of the responsibilities being taken away from the municipalities?

The role of the Universities of Applied Sciences as reformers of welfare and well-being services

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Katariina Raij, PhD, Laurea

Director Katariina Raij of Laurea University of Applied Sciences had an innovative approach: as soon as a new innovation appears, new training/studies should be made available swiftly. Otherwise, we won´t utilize the innovative ideas properly. The innovation should be quickly introduced to the markets, there are lots of innovative technologies that were never applied. How do we bring agility into the process of innovation? When thinking about health care in the public sector, it is an industry focused on curing diseases, and the whole system is based on illnesses not health.  The research findings of the JADE project 2014, Active and Healthy Ageing Report 2011, Special Euro Barometer 378 and Digi Barometer 2014 show that technology is very poorely utilized in solving  the problems of the public sector.

In order to be internationaly “visible”, it is important to invest in high-level development and know-how. Finland has a reputation of being slow in putting new health technology innovations into use in the health care sector. Finland is also very careful when approaching new innovations because of the risk of conflicts of interest. That prevents the creation of partnerships between the private and the public sector which are very important especially for the health care system. Insufficient revision of regulations and standards delays the entrance of innovations into the markets by months or even years.

She praised the new National Curriculum that is currently being drafted by the Finnish National Board of Education. She called the new curriculum fantastic, with the mindset the children will acquire and the way in which they will perceive the future. As of 2019, there will be a freedom of choice among public, private and third sector health service providers. How does the client recognize the best quality? How do we help clients make good choices? The question is: Do we need a new college degree/ complementary educational training in service navigation/ guidance?

 

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The Well Life Center of Laurea created a research project called HyvinvointiTV (CaringTV) . The HyvinvointiTV’s studio was built in the Well Life Center with professionals offering individual guidance and advisory services that were co-created with clients. The aim of the interactive HyvinvointiTV was to support the health and well-being of elderly people living independently in their own homes. At that time, the founders of course had no idea how fast the e-services would develop. HyvinvointiTV was a pioneer in robotics. The award-winning service gained a lot of attention all around the world. The clients claimed that the screen felt so real they felt as if they had invited guests to their homes.

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Care Innovation and Design (CIDe) was founded in 2010 in collaboration between Laurea and Vantaan Innovaatioinstituutti Oy (Innovation Institute of Vantaa, Inc.). CIDe sees itself as an innovation environment with an emphasis on advancing health  and well-being, supporting self-care and enabling customer-centeredness in all research and development activities. At the moment CIDe is owned by Laurea only. Care Innovation and Design as such doesn´t exist in any other University of Applied Sciences in Finland.

 

Jana Arhio, Laurea

“Drag-on – identity” Experiencing GovJam 2013 at Turku

HC SVNT DRACONES?? Hä? What? Is that the theme? What that means? First day in Global Government Jam at City of Turku started with lots of question mark in the air – all where totally blown away. We had just introduced through pre-recorded video what GovJam 2013 is going to be and at the end of the video they revealed the secret theme. Which was: HC SVNT DRACONES.

GovJam Turku

“ServiceStar-team”

Less talk, more action

We formed groups and begin to draw or write what ever did come to our minds. HC SVNT DRACONES. What images that brings to your mind. Well…fire, dragons, snake, lohi, Harley Davidson, HC – WC, doctors, cones, Latin, church, ancient writing – I started to warm up. So did the others. When 8 minutes had gone we gathered our thoughts in one table and started brainstorming. One thing led to another and soon we had couple of ideas to start with. From Latin to understand doctors and from hospitals and dragon eggs to customer rewarding system to rewarding doctors when they had performed understandably to their patients. After 15 minutes we had clue about our service concept. Wow!

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Service Design meets Futures Thinking #4

A research based series of posts discussing the statement “Futures Research supports the Service Design process in multiple ways and throughout the whole process” by Minna Koskelo (LinkedIn) and Anu K. Nousiainen (Linkedin).

Part #4: We are in the Service Innovation business!

Our three (and a half) previous blog entries have been summarizing the purpose of our study initiated in 2012 and the main findings from the study including the synergies between (Service) Design Thinking and Futures Thinking, and our illustration for Futures Research enhanced Service Design process. After some more investigation (selection of 150 books and articles) and integrating the strategic business thinking into the model with Katri Ojasalo (Linkedin), (our Head of Master’s Degree Programme in Service Innovation and Design here at Laurea University of Applied Sciences) we are proud to announce our forthcoming chapter in an international Handbook of Service Innovation (to be published by Springer in early 2014). Indeed, we have came into a realization:

What we’ve done so far is not only about Futures enhanced Service Design – instead, this is the next chapter in building unique, synergistic and dynamic capabilities for Service Innovation.

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Take a novel path to create new business opportunities and new value

 It has been clear from the beginning of our study that Design Thinking and Futures Thinking share a strong synergy in their principles and targets. Now it is crystal clear that by combining their unique approaches in innovation process results in bright and viable business opportunities (see process framework A. below). While Futures Thinking concentrates on driving forces in complex evolving systems and alternative contexts, Design Thinking embraces the viewpoint of system constraints and people oriented solutions. Not only this powerful combination gives you options for decision making in strategic and offering creation level but it tackles the two critical challenges in today’s (and tomorrow’s) business: Uncertainty and timing in creating Value Roadmaps in the interconnected and changing world. Here, Futures Thinking helps to make uncertainty easier to approach through providing alternatives for decision making and therefore improving organization’s readiness to act. Design Thinking improves the organization’s agility to seize the change with emphatic, adaptive and deep research approach and through iterative co-designing with customers to provide desirable, feasible and viable options for solutions.

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Service Design meets Futures thinking # 3

A research based series of posts discussing the statement “Futures Research supports the Service Design process in multiple ways and throughout the whole process” by Minna Koskelo and Anu K. Nousiainen.

Part #3: The Process Perspective

Our two previous blog entries have been summarizing the purpose of our study and the main findings including the synergies of service design and futures thinking, thus why it is beneficial for the two disciplines utilize approach and methods from one another and learn from each other. This third post introduces Service Design Process that is enhanced by futures thinking. Additionally we illustrate how service design thinking benefits foresight process.

The big picture: Becoming a human-centric innovative trendsetter

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IN PLANNING: A joint research project to create strategic partnership network

by Päivi J. Tossavainen

The growth of ser­vice business is projected to continue in EU. This trend touches all organizations. It also provides opportunities for Laurea, while systematic research and disciplined new business practices are sought in the field of service innovation and service design.

Traditionally European research on service has been strong. Thus, a joint research project with partners from various European countries is an excellent way to cooperate in this field.

Laurea SID is applying funds from EU to commence a joint research project. The funding scheme is FP7/ Marie Curie/ Industry-Academia Partnerships and Pathways (IAPP).

Our academic partners in this project proposal are Politechnico Di Milano, Italy, and University of Dundee, Glasgow, UK. On the business side, three small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will participate.

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A Sneak Peek into Palmu Inc. Society

The Palmu Society Service Design Seminar was held on the 13th of November at the Korjaamo Culture Factory in Helsinki. The event was a closed seminar for Palmu Inc.’s clients and their clients. Event organiser Palmu Inc. is a Finnish service design based organisation. Here’s how they define themselves: Palmu Inc. is the fastest growing service design agency in Europe. Palmu specializes in spurring service business growth through service design. We identify the sources of customer value and apply this insight to designing new service concepts, digital channels, and real-world encounters.