Rethinking “Design” in the Public Sector

Peter Jones Governance, Social Systems Design

(Edited version first published in Jan 2016 Canadian Government Executive ) Government is widely perceived as lagging and fragmented in providing integrated online services to citizens. In the meantime, people take to the Web for managing nearly every service and information requirement. We have learned to expect a high quality of customer service online, well-designed sites and experiences, and thoughtful consideration to the management of personal transactions. There is a reason why the quality of online engagement has been steadily perfected by the private sector: it is because it has put a premium on “design.” The intentional rethinking of the so-called user experience, combined with continual research into customer preferences, and evaluation of new features and design changes, has made all the difference. Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft have built their holds on the public by a constant dedication to user-centered design and service engineering. They have set a high bar for access and usability that public services must address, or risk becoming less relevant in citizen’s lives. We could say this is an emerging digital divide between customers and citizens. …

Integrative Design Healthcare Charette

Peter Jones Design for Care, Innovation, Systemic Design

Prof John Marshall, program director for the new Stamps School of Design Integrative Design MDes, invited us to facilitate a multi-stakeholder charrette in December with their students and professors to develop proposals for the Ann Arbor VA Hospital and community. Working with John and the VA’s key stakeholders for innovation and ambulatory care, the Redesign team employed a modified Basadur Simplexity structure to guide the proceedings. The charrette included medical industry professionals, design leads and managers from Guardian Industries, Stryker, U.S. Army veterans, and of course stakeholders from the VA Healthcare System to work in small groups to identify, map out and explore core challenges for proposing focal points for action. The Stamps graduate design students produced excellent footage and photographs to document the session.   Redesign partner Patricia sketched the full-length visual narrative to capture the process, stages, and plenary results from the day’s sessions. The focus of the workshop entailed two significant challenges: How do we develop different ways of understanding what is important to VA patients? How can we go about creating connections with our patients beyond their disease process or treatment?   …

Kenneth Boulding: Designing the Designers

Peter Jones Social Systems Design, Systemic Design

“I suppose what I am really suggesting is a kind of third order mutation to redesign the institutions that design the designers of the designers. This may sound ambitious, but it is, I think, the only response which is likely to deal with quiet extraordinary crises of our times.”

Announcing RSD5, Relating Systems Thinking to Design 5

Peter Jones Service Design, Social Systems Design, Strategic Innovation, Systemic Design

RSD5  Systemic Design for Social Complexity Relating Systems Thinking and Design 5 Symposium OCAD University      Toronto, Canada      October 13-15, 2016 The RSD series has advanced an agenda for exploring a strong integration between systems thinking and design to take on the most important challenges facing our planet today. RSD4 held in Banff, Canada September 2015 brought together nearly 200 people together from around the world to explore new dimensions in design-led systems design, transformation and research.  The keynote videos are now available, and the full proceedings are published online. Join us in the vibrant metropolis of Toronto, October 2016 for the fifth symposium hosted at OCAD University  to accelerate a convergence of design, social, and technology fields toward co-creating humanized (eco)systems. The theme of Systemic Design for Social Complexity represents our continuing focus on advanced systemic and service design for contemporary and futures-oriented societal concerns. All social systems become complex over time, developing resilience, and increasing resistance to structural change. Systemic design challenges typically face multiple dilemmas in defining successful outcomes and orientations to change. Systemic design approaches negotiate the dilemma of emergence …