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Design process – description

Read and learn about the series of steps in the design process that can be used to identify and develop an idea using a human-centred approach.
Centre for Sustainable Fashion, Design Process
© University of the Arts London

Below are a series of steps that can be used to identify and develop an idea using a human-centred approach. Read through and familiarise yourself with these steps as we will be using them in the next activity. You can also download the factsheet below. These creative techniques offer an approach that you can use to generate and explore ideas, and to help you think about how you would prototype your ideas and bring them to life. You can refer to these techniques for future design work.

Design methods

1. Focus

Select one Agenda and one Issue to focus on.

2. Reframe

Reframe your selected Issue as a design opportunity by writing it in a form of a question that invites solutions.

3. Identify participants

We want to ensure that any solutions you come up with consider real people. To help you do this, you will identify people that are affected and involved by this Issue.

4. Idea generation

With your design opportunity and participants in mind, you can now think broadly of possible solutions and interventions, and come up with multiple ideas.

5. Idea selection

Now look at all the ideas you have generated and select the most promising idea, or the one you are most excited by, or the one you think is simplest to try.

6. Storyboarding

To refine your idea and bring it to life, you will sketch a simple storyboard of how it would work in a real-world scenario, and how the participants you identified would interact and be affected by it.

7. Prototyping

Finally, if you think the idea is promising enough, you will identify a way to test some part of the idea for real. Doing this will help you learn more and decide on next steps.

© University of the Arts London
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