Integrating Design Practitioners and Design Practices into Strategy Practice

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Conference Proceeding
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The purpose of this paper is to explore ways design practices are interacting with strategy practices and the role and value of designers in proximity to strategy practice. Despite the growing recognition of design thinking in the management literature, we still know little about how designers contribute to strategy and how design and strategy practices interact. To address these gaps, we draw upon findings from a qualitative study with 16 strategic designers and strategists. We use a grounded theory approach to share emerging themes that outline the ways design practitioners and desig(ing) are featuring in strategy practice and outline the factors that enable and inhibit the integration of design practices into strategy practices. Our analysis suggests that, first, design practices have influenced strategy formulation by integrating some of its specific characteristics into strategy practices. Second, that design in strategy practice is seen as a valuable extension to traditional practice in a number of ways. Third, as design practice is being integrated into strategy practice, there is a need to understand the placement of strategic design practitioners in strategy practice. We conclude the paper with a discussion of our findings and avenues for further research into the relationship of design practices in strategy practice.
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