Abstract

There has been a recent upsurge in the promotion of ‘creative thinking’. The input of several disciplines is necessary to innovate new products and services. However, there remain many challenges to collaboration amongst creative and science-based disciplines. This paper examines disparities between designers and technologists when innovating and tackling problems. It is suggested that dominance of one party is likely to result in inadequate results. This paper seeks to explore how collaboration can be mediated by design thinking. A case study of designers and technologists working on a software development project is presented. The case study highlights challenges resulting from differences between designers and technologists. Guiding principles aimed at facilitating collaboration are outlined. Finally, the paper reflects on the symbiosis between the disciplines, and how difference in fact cultivates innovation.

Keywords:

interdisciplinary teams; design/technology collaboration; design thinking; design projects; project management

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Jun 17th, 12:00 AM

United We Stand: A Critique of the Design Thinking Approach in Interdisciplinary Innovation

There has been a recent upsurge in the promotion of ‘creative thinking’. The input of several disciplines is necessary to innovate new products and services. However, there remain many challenges to collaboration amongst creative and science-based disciplines. This paper examines disparities between designers and technologists when innovating and tackling problems. It is suggested that dominance of one party is likely to result in inadequate results. This paper seeks to explore how collaboration can be mediated by design thinking. A case study of designers and technologists working on a software development project is presented. The case study highlights challenges resulting from differences between designers and technologists. Guiding principles aimed at facilitating collaboration are outlined. Finally, the paper reflects on the symbiosis between the disciplines, and how difference in fact cultivates innovation.

 

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