Global Design Thinking Workshops (GDTW) are a novel concept that goes beyond the mere introduction to Design Thinking as a process. It has been initiated and developed by Dr. Claudia Nicolai and the HPI D-School team. We have been creating this format as deep dives into the strategic questions of Design Thinking as a mindset and we are offering this course to HPI students and external participants.
In this program, participants experience Design Thinking not only as a process of this life-centered approach by dealing with complex innovation problems and a creative mindset in diverse teams.
We combine this life-centered approach with the perspective of technological feasibility (how can ideas be realized?) and economic viability (how can new business models look like?).
In our GDTW program we offer three different workshops with a respective focus topic, which we deepen into:
01 Strategic Design: From Human-Centered Design to Strategic Futures
02 Designing for Global Impact
03 Teamed Leadership
The GDTW program is being held in English.
We combine the work on a concrete innovation project with reflections on a specific topic. Our learning approach is based on the concept of problem-based experiential learning. We implement this approach as a project-oriented course in which the participants collaborate with a partner organization (NPOs and NGOs, large companies, SMEs, young start-ups, social organizations and public institutions).
Teamed Leadership (March 2023)
In March 2023, we will offer our Global Design Thinking Workshop as Deep Dive into Design Thinking and Teamed Leadership.
During this Global Design Thinking Workshop, we will focus on designing life-centered innovations while developing a Teamed Leadership approach. This means that you will work with a project partner in diverse and international teams on a design challenge.
While living teamed leadership and how to participate in change processes, you will also experience the process and mindset of Design Thinking as you design solutions to a complex problem and work with our international coaching team on how this can be translated into a real setting.
In this workshop, we would like to address a key design principle of Design Thinking: how to foster and develop teamed leadership? When it comes to designing new and innovative solutions to complex problems like strategic or policy design, we face two challenges:
On the one hand, it is about focusing on the needs and requirements of people in the context of their lives (life-centered perspective): What do they see as their relevant problems, needs, and desires? On the other hand, it is about finding innovation opportunities (leadership perspective): What does it need to lead teams into and through change? So, we are concerned with the interplay of innovation and leadership.
The Program Team
We design our GDTW program with our international network of Design Thinking coaches and cooperate regularly with partner institutions from our global network, which also gave rise to the Global Design Thinking Alliance (GDTA). Participants have the opportunity to benefit from the experience and exchange with colleagues from other Design Thinking institutions in the USA, South Africa, Sweden, Malaysia, Mexico and Egypt – just to name a few.
The Participants & Coaches
In this program, they form diverse, multidisciplinary and multicultural, teams that work together with team coaches and a project partner on a real-life problem. This is a unique opportunity to learn from and with students with different backgrounds and ways of thinking, from other cities and countries, accompanied by one of our highly experienced Design Thinking coaches.
OUR LEARNING APPROACH
This is an on-site course – with a digital mindset. We will welcome you on our beautiful campus in Potsdam, Germany where you will work on-site. And yes, and, we will incorporate digital platforms and tools to support your on-site work. During this workshop you will work hand in hand with an international team (max. five people including yourself) and a coach who will accompany you.
Overall, we offer you a multilayered learning experience. This means that you work with your team and, at the same time, we have cross sharing experiences amongst the teams and we will co-design the content with other international players in the field of leadership.
All participants will receive a Certificate of Attendance.
The time required for active participation in this course is approximately 50 hours in March 2023. There are times that are obligatory for everyone and there are times for flexible teamwork. In the following overview you will find the basic structure.
Our program includes the fixed times for working together in the program (43 hours):
- Friday, March 10th, 2023: 9.00 am – 12.00 pm CET (3 hours) ONLINE
- Thursday, March 16th, 2023: 09:00 am – 5:00 pm CET (8 hours) ON-SITE
- Friday, March 17th, 2023: 09:00 am – 5:00 pm CET (8 hours) ON-SITE
- Monday, March 20th, 2023: 09:00 am – 5:00 pm CET (8 hours) ON-SITE
- Tuesday, March 21st, 2023: 09:00 am –5:00 pm CET (8 hours) ON-SITE
- Wednesday, March 22nd, 2023: 09:00 am – 5:00 pm CET (8 hours) ON-SITE
We also expect flexible individual and team work after program days. This will include in total up to 7 hours for your project documentation.
As our programs run on a team-based, experiential approach, your attendance on-site on all program days are mandatory, please consider this carefully before applying.
Strategic Design: From Human-Centered Design to Strategic Futures
Human-Centeredness is of the key pillars to the design of innovation processes. However, it is also the first pitfall and criticism of Design Thinking as interrogating and observing current needs of today’s users as they have difficulties to imagine others than near-by futures and might not care about long-term impact of design and consumption decisions. The imagination of our today’s user fails in particular short when it comes to envision disruptive solutions: we are able to give direct feedback about our dislike concerning today’s and tomorrow’s public transportation system, but we might not be able to give valuable insights about self-organizing traffic systems, as we can’t imagine how it really feels to be in a vehicle without a driver and a steering wheel.
Therefore, strategic futures come into play, as we want to create solutions that will work long-term and will also address near-by users’ delight. Thus, when we are about to change the current system towards a strategic design of the future that we all want to live in we have to tap into more than a human-centered approach. Thus, we have to design what’s the future we want to live in and what are the first steps into creating a systemic change.
Accordingly, this Global Design Thinking Workshop 01 will give you a strategic approach of Design Thinking: You will learn about how to tap into trends, build scenarios and how to use speculative design to create desirable futures.
Designing for Global Impact
This Global Design Thinking course focuses on framing innovations in a sustainable manner. Human-centered solutions will fail short on implementation if they don't incorporate finding new answers to how to make a change on the systems level. Here, we frame our Design Thinking approach with the Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs). Thus, we would like to address a fundamental design principle of Design Thinking: how to achieve sustainable impact at the system level with innovation? When designing new and innovative solutions to complex problems like policy design and citizen participation, we face two challenges:
On the one hand, it is about focusing on the needs and requirements of people in the context of their lives (human-centered perspective). Why do they (not) participate in local processes? What do they see as relevant problems? How would they like to make their voice heard?
On the other hand, it is about finding opportunities for sustainable impact (systems perspective). How can we connect the different stakeholders? How do we create open discourse culture at the local level, especially in the context of local parties and activities within them? The teams will design solutions for a global problem and focus on how a solution can be translated to different local contexts to impact.
What makes the GDTW program global?
The program team:
We design our GDTW program with our international network of Design Thinking Coaches and cooperate regularly with partner institutions from our global network, which also gave rise to the GDTA (Global Design Thinking Alliance). Participants have the opportunity to benefit from the experience and exchange with colleagues from other design thinking institutions in the USA, South Africa, Sweden, Malaysia, Mexico and Egypt.
In addition to HPI students, we particularly invite international participants to apply. In this program, they form international, multidisciplinary teams that work together with a team coach and a project partner on a real-life problem.
We run these 3 workshops regularly and we are currently offering 2 GDTWs per year. You have to apply for each GDTW workshop separately.
You are invited to participate in more than GDTW workshop. If you are interested in more than one topic/focus, you can apply for several GDTWs. There is no fixed sequential order of the GDTW workshops.
Application for the Global Design Thinking Workshop
The Global Design Thinking Workshop is open for students and graduates of all disciplines and universities and young professionals (up to two years after graduation).
You can sign up for our application reminder and we will inform you via e-mail once the application period for the next Global Design Thinking Workshop starts.
HPI students can register directly by email to the Studienreferat. Participation is free of charge for HPI students.
Interested in becoming a project partner?
For each of our GDTW workshops we are working together with a partner organization. We have for example been partnering with the Federal Association for Skilled Crafts (Zentralverband des Handwerks), Deutsche Bahn, ING Diba, Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie (BDI) and Interhyp to develop innovations, ideas and solutions. Please contact us, if you are interested in project partnership.