Posts Tagged ‘Rhode Island Design Week’

Design Thinking for Business Innovation

Sunday, September 20th, 2015
Design Thinking

Design Thinking

Design Week Rhode Island 2015 is underway and from September 16th to the 27th, Design Week partners offer events and programs to showcase their innovative and economic impact. Tonight’s event was a screening of “Design & Thinking” at Providence’s Cable Car Cinema. The documentary explores ways to fully engage organizations to ┬áreflect on the changing landscape of business, culture and society. It considers how creative people collaborate to make change and how their work is applied to business models. I attended because I have read so much about design thinking and I want to consider how this methodology can be used to design for resilience. Can we develop business models, processes and products that embody resilience to most disruptions? According to IDEO, one of the world’s leading innovation and design firms, design thinking is a method of meeting people’s needs and desires in a feasible and viable way – in other words, designing something that people will use and that you can afford to supply.

I left the event with a few more design words to add to my vocabulary, but I am not entirely convinced that design thinking is the magic elixir to develop resilience. Design thinking approaches are predicated on a recognized need for a product or service. Since most small businesses don’t believe a disaster can ever happen to them, there is not yet, at least not in my experience, a demand for an elegantly designed solution. But I enjoyed myself and am happy to participate in a number of the other events planned for Design Week. Moo, a graphic design company that produces stationery and promotional materials for small businesses, is hosting a tour of its print facility. The Rhode Island School of Design is hosting several events, including one on design for social change. Food incubators and health care providers are sharing their experiences with design, so I hope to be inspired by what others are doing.