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Question everything - Designing more effectively for social impact

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Standard human-centered design practices are often well-suited for well-structured problems, but fall short for considering the broader social implications of solutions to well-structured problems and for attempting to address ill-structured or so-called “wicked societal problems” (e.g., our broken healthcare system, homelessness, addiction to social media or electronic devices).

Richard will review many of the common characteristics of well-structured, ill-structured, and wicked problems, and, with the workshop attendees, will discuss their implications.

Then, by questioning everything about the standard design process for well-structured problems, Richard will identify common process shortcomings, present examples of projects that ignored such shortcomings as well as of projects that didn’t, and provide attendees with the opportunity to experience ways of how to address such shortcomings.

Attendees will emerge better able to target social impact intentionally and better able to design for achieving that intentional social impact.

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Question everything - Designing more effectively for social impact

  1. 1. QUESTION EVERYTHING Designing more effectively for 
 social impact  
 28 March 2018 RICHARD ANDERSON
 riander@oestrategy.com @riander OE Strategy www.oestrategy.com ATX
  2. 2. Standard human-centered design practices are often well-suited for well- structured problems, but fall short for considering the broader social implications of solutions to well-structured problems and for attempting to address ill-structured or so-called “wicked societal problems” (e.g., our broken healthcare system, homelessness, addiction to social media or electronic devices). Richard will review many of the common characteristics of well-structured, ill- structured, and wicked problems, and, with the workshop attendees, will discuss their implications. Then, by questioning everything about the standard design process for well- structured problems, Richard will identify common process shortcomings, present examples of projects that ignored such shortcomings as well as of projects that didn’t, and provide attendees with the opportunity to experience ways of how to address such shortcomings. Attendees will emerge better able to target social impact intentionally and better able to design for achieving that intentional social impact. ABOUT THIS CLASS
  3. 3. WHAT IS SOCIAL IMPACT? The effect of an activity on the social fabric of the community and well-being of the individuals and families. 
 http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/social-impact.html
  4. 4. PlayPumps were going to harness the energy of children to provide fresh water to sub-Saharan African villages. They didn't.
  5. 5. The “reductive seduction” is not malicious, but it can be reckless. For two reasons. First, it’s dangerous for the people whose problems you’ve mistakenly diagnosed as easily solvable. There is real fallout when well-intentioned people attempt to solve problems without acknowledging the underlying complexity. There are so many examples. As David Bornstein wrote in The New York Times, over four decades of Westerners working on clean water has led to “billions of dollars worth of broken wells and pumps. Many of them functioned for less than two years.” One classic example: in 2006, the U.S. government, The Clinton Foundation, The Case Foundation, and others pledged $16.4 million to PlayPump, essentially a merry-go-round pump that produced safe drinking water. Despite being touted as the (fun!) answer to the developing world’s water woes, by 2007, one-quarter of the pumps in Zambia alone were in disrepair. It was later estimated that children would need to “play” for 27 hours a day to produce the water PlayPump promised. …Second, the reductive seduction of other people’s problems is dangerous for the people whose problems you’ve avoided. While thousands of the country’s best and brightest flock to far- flung places to ease unfamiliar suffering and tackle foreign dysfunction, we’ve got plenty of domestic need.
  6. 6. Is ‘standard’ HCD adequate for designing for 
 (positive) social impact? Often: No!
  7. 7. POSTER CHILD FOR DESIGN THINKING Stanford d.school
  8. 8. PHASES OF DESIGN
  9. 9. BASIC PROCESS FROM QUESTION TO ANSWER https://medium.com/digital-experience-design/how-to-apply-a-design-thinking-hcd-ux-or-any-creative-process-from-scratch-b8786efbf812#.6cvmqimrf
  10. 10. HCD = iterated observation, ideation, and testing
  11. 11. https://www.codeforamerica.org/focus-areas/healthy-communities
  12. 12. https://www.codeforamerica.org/focus-areas/healthy-communities https://youtu.be/lqTFi2U2Ebc
  13. 13. THE PROBLEM SPECTRUM well-structured ill-structured ‘wicked’ standard HCD
  14. 14. today’s focus well-structured ill-structured ‘wicked’ THE PROBLEM SPECTRUM
  15. 15. from Wikipedia Rittel & Webber’s 1973 formulation of wicked problems:
  16. 16. vivifychangecatalyst.wordpress.com
  17. 17. George Aye
  18. 18. Main Projects This Year Focus on Improving Civic Engagement
  19. 19. A FEW COMMON CHARACTERISTICS Can’t fix, only mitigate Can’t just throw 
 it out there to 
 see if it works Old / legacy systems,
 processes, policies, & laws 
 impose constraints Risk & change aversion Those on the inside 
 don’t understand the 
 end-to-end journey Lots of roadblocks and previous failures
  20. 20. How might we adjust 
 our approach to more 
 effectively design for 
 social impact? must
  21. 21. A bit about my journey
  22. 22. A bit about Richard Anderson Usability/ Discovery Adventures
  23. 23. vivifychangecatalyst.wordpress.com
  24. 24. Susan Wolfe Me
  25. 25. A bit about your journey Introduce yourself to 
 someone you don’t know. What drew you to today’s class?
  26. 26. It’s not exhaustive. We’re not going to solve world hunger. It’s an opportunity to explore a number of different aspects of how we do what we do. It also provides pointers to some
 online literature for you to continue 
 your exploration of this topic. TODAY’S CLASS
  27. 27. Questioning the adequacy of 
 standard HCD
  28. 28. EXERCISE IN REFRAMING
  29. 29. INNOVATING ON WEARABLES Wearables should not be defined primarily through their form (technological objects one can ‘wear’) or technical functions (tracking, nudging, reminding). We can develop more useful insights about the role of these technologies in our lives are when we conceptualize wearables in terms of the relationship they have to our bodies, social selves, and our personal identities. Every wearable and object holds the promise and potential to mediate the relation to the self as an embodied being; social relations of belonging; and autobiographical relations. How might we think about designing wearables if we reframe its potential: • as a tool for discipline and control? • as technologies of belonging? • as autobiographical objects?
  30. 30. Questioning the goal of 
 reducing friction
  31. 31. A COMMON GOAL: REDUCING FRICTION
  32. 32. Poor design creates friction. … Whenever friction occurs, someone becomes frustrated.
  33. 33. INTENTIONALLY DESIGNING FRICTION BACK INTO THE EXPERIENCE Design for skill building Design for self-reflection Design for collisions Design for confrontation http://99u.adobe.com/videos/55963/steve-selzer-designing-for-friction
  34. 34. https://uxplanet.org/when-friction-in-design-is-good-for-ux-e2dd82cfab67
  35. 35. http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Publication%20Files/11-091.pdf
  36. 36. EXERCISE IN CONSIDERING THE ROLE OF FRICTION
  37. 37. CONSIDERING FOOD WASTE What are some ways to change behavior by: • reducing friction? • adding friction? https://foodsaving.weebly.com/food-waste-in-hong-kong.html
  38. 38. Questioning the adequacy of 
 not considering 
 the entire ecosystem
  39. 39. https://il2cl4cblwb3ixgve3g3x9zk-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Impact-gaps-Canvas-Systems-copy.pdf
  40. 40. https://vimeo.com/193582920
  41. 41. http://www.dubberly.com/articles/connecting-things.html
  42. 42. EXERCISE IN CONSIDERING THE ECOSYSTEM
  43. 43. EXPLORING THE HEALTHCARE ECOSYSTEM One of the biggest internal shifts in the healthcare industry in the recent past has been and continues to be the systemic move from “fee-for-service” care to “value-based” care. Practically speaking, “fee-for-service” was an easier revenue and innovation model to understand. Things cost what they cost, and businesses were reimbursed for procedures based in part on the number of them performed. The path from product to outcome was clear—making the measurement of effectiveness straightforward. In the value-based world, success is tied more closely to outcomes—how much a patient’s health has improved. As a result of this shift, many medical device companies find themselves stuck at key points in the innovation process, grappling with defining “What is the value? Who evaluates the value? And, “How do we measure it?”
 
 https://thrivethinking.com/2017/04/10/healthcare-innovation-seize-opportunity/ Identify the key stakeholders in the ecosystem and then: • map the relationship between the entities (as you understand it today) • speculate on the beliefs and values that each entity presently holds Fee for service Fee for outcomes
  44. 44. EXPLORING THE FOOD SUPPLY ECOSYSTEM Identify the key stakeholders in the ecosystem and then: • map the relationship between the entities (as you understand it today) • speculate on the beliefs and values that each entity presently holds http://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/english/environmentinhk/waste/prob_solutions/food_waste_challenge.html
  45. 45. Questioning the adequacy of 
 typical exploration of design ramifications
  46. 46. Every day as designers, we are contributing to creating a new world – one filled with international social networks, virtual personal assistants, and self-driving car fleets. In lieu of a long history of shared culture with these technologies, we need new stories and mythologies to address the societal implications of these transformations.
  47. 47. Questioning the adequacy of 
 typical design research
  48. 48. not just “the neediest residents”
  49. 49. George Aye
  50. 50. How can design researchers avoid this?
  51. 51. EXERCISE IN RECOGNIZING YOUR OWN BIASES
  52. 52. ACKNOWLEDGING YOUR BIASES “In 2011, team members from Design Impact (DI) and Tarsadia Foundation (Tarsadia) discussed design’s role in addressing critical human needs. “…designers often build relationships with outside organizations in order to take on social impact projects. While these relationships may include business and government partners, more often that not, designers work with non-profit organizations in some capacity. We went on to discuss a critical gap at the intersection of the design and non-profit worlds; namely a lack of understanding between each group for the other’s processes and models for change. These two disciplines often speak different ‘languages,’ work at different speeds, and operate under different incentives. This communication issue is a key factor that can hinder productive collaboration. The DI and Tarsadia team identified a common goal: support productive collaboration between designers and organizations working to address critical human needs.” https://www.d-impact.org//wp-content/uploads/2015/06/guide_final.2.pdf For each of the primary entities in your ecosystem: • identify your personal beliefs and biases that could come into play • explore how you might work to get around these
  53. 53. Questioning the adequacy of 
 fast-paced, lean work
  54. 54. GOOB vs. time to generate ideas MVP vs. big picture Scientific test & measure vs. empathetic Speed vs. slow, conscious design
  55. 55. Questioning the adequacy of 
 project-framed engagements
  56. 56. Questioning the adequacy of 
 typical commercial goals
  57. 57. LOOK TO MODELS OF SHARED VALUE SOCIAL VALUE CORPORATE VALUE
  58. 58. REFRAMING THE WHY
  59. 59. Questioning the adequacy of 
 designing for user goals & feelings
  60. 60. QUESTION 
 EVERYTHING
  61. 61. A few key takeaways
  62. 62. GENERAL PRINCIPLES Fall in love with 
 the problem Consider the 
 whole system Establish long-term relationships Be creative Follow-through Reframe the problem Change must 
 be sustainable
  63. 63. https://www.wickedproblems.com/1_ryan_hubbard.php
  64. 64. Getting started with designing for 
 social impact
  65. 65. QUESTION EVERYTHING Designing more effectively for 
 social impact  
 28 March 2018 RICHARD ANDERSON
 riander@oestrategy.com @riander OE Strategy www.oestrategy.com ATX
  66. 66. http://designthinking-socialup.eu/en/about
  67. 67. QUESTION EVERYTHING Thoughts? Questions? Many thanks. RICHARD ANDERSON
 riander@oestrategy.com @riander OE Strategy www.oestrategy.com ATX

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