Empathy Maps help to rapidly put your team in the user’s shoes and align on pains and gains — whether at the beginning of a project or mid-stream when you need to re-focus on your user.
Empathy Map is a tool that helps designers empathize with the people for which they are designing a solution. With empathetic mapping the designer/developer put themselves in the position of the user. Empathy Maps can also be used to test a prototype design or in activities such as role playing to help better understand the needs of the user.
For those who aren’t familiar, design thinking is essentially a methodology to problem solving that’s meant to mimic the way designers operate. Its exact steps can vary depending who you talk to, but it generally involves identifying a problem and considering its solutions through the lens of typical human behavior and prototyping. “Children are creative by nature, but we feel that the education that they are receiving restricts their creativity,” says Alexandra Valdivieso, founder and CEO of Seven Thinkers. “The idea of using design thinking as a learning method is based on teaching them a method to generate their own answers to the problems they will face in the future, instead of teaching them to memorize.”
But should we really teach kids this branded style of problem-solving so young?
A significant challenge for much local government is understanding what constituents want and need. The top-down approach that many agencies employ can create a disconnect between services and who’s being served.
Enter Public, a new nonprofit that wants to bring the tenets of good design to local governments. The idea is that by approaching government bureaucracy as a design problem, agencies can better learn what their constituents want, and then design successful programs based on those insights.
If we want design to be at the core of the business, we need to know how to evaluate its maturity. If you ask any modern CEO, they will say that design is important to their business. But, in reality, that is not always the case—or, at least, in the same dimension they say it is.
IDEO Cambridge may be the geekiest design studio ever. Cambridge, Massachusetts, is home to some of the most brilliant minds in the world at both Harvard and MIT. Ideo’s studio is right in the middle of these two institutions and is harnessing the location’s brain power in its design.