The Challenges of Human-Centred Design in a Public Sector Innovation Context

Design Research Society
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Conference Proceeding
Proceedings of DRS 2016, Design Research Society 50th Anniversary Conference, 2016, 6 pp. 2149 - 2164
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The world is increasingly faced with complex societal problems such as climate change, an ageing population, radicalising youth and chronic health problems. Public sector organisations have a key role in addressing these issues. It is widely acknowledged that tackling these problems requires new approaches and methods. Design, and in particular human-centred design, offers opportunities to develop these methods. In this paper I argue that a new type of human-centred innovation practice is necessary to adjust traditional user-centred design methods and tools to the public sector innovation context. This context involves different types of stakeholders with conflicting needs and aspirations, and requires a precise articulation of the value of human-centred design. I will propose a possible answer to these challenges through a case study relating to severe mental illness, in which we applied Dorst’s frame creation methodology, in combination with the NADI-model of Needs and Aspirations for Design and Innovation.
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