Understanding and Applying Design Thinking

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Zwart, Courtney
Design Thinking; Creative Problem Solving; Organization Development
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The intent of this project was to gain an in-depth understanding of design thinking, both by internalizing its principles and fundamentals and applying them to an actual design challenge. I began with an extensive review of the literature and also interviewed an experienced design thinking practitioner. I then completed an 8-week online course in design thinking offered by the University of Virginia, which provided instruction in a 15-step approach to design thinking as well as key tools to use in the approach. Finally, I applied this approach to a design challenge owned by a leading consultancy in New York City. I detailed key learnings I had from both applying the process as well as comparing the approach to the Thinking Skills Model of Creative Problem Solving (Puccio, Murdock, & Mance, 2007). I concluded with both professional and personal actions that I plan to take as a result of learnings from this project.