05 May 2015, 14:00 
Wolfson Building 206 


Q. How many designers does it take to change a light bulb?

A. Does it have to be a light bulb?


Design thinking is a human-centered approach to solving problems using the tools of collaborative design to gather inspiration, build empathy, and create solutions. It had its origins in the design of products, but its application grew to include nearly all business or organizational issues, including services, spaces, and experiences of all kinds: new business platforms, improved hospital processes, retail supply-chain improvements, city district redevelopment, aid for the developing world, and strategies for government, academic, and nonprofit institutions.


The light-bulb joke at the top contains a fundamental truth about design thinking: it starts by questioning the parameters of the problem. It tries, by various methods, to insure that we are solving the right problem, and through prototyping, it continues to ask questions at every step we make towards a solution.


Despite the popular conception of designers as fashion-conscious creative geniuses, design thinking is not primarily concerned with aesthetics, except in balance with all the other factors: usefulness, usability, and business viability. And design thinking can be learned and practiced by all, if they are given the support and resources necessary to apply it.


"Today is a prototype for tomorrow" is the mantra of Dr. Leon Segal, founder of Innovationship and former IDEO office head. Join him as he shares stories of innovation through design thinking, the human-centered approach championed by Silicon Valley's leading companies, and offers practical advice for designers and aspiring innovators.


Leon Segal, Ph.D., is an Innovation Psychologist with over 25 years of experience in the fields of human factors, product innovation and experience design. From designing future cockpits for NASA to heading IDEO’s Tel Aviv office, he has directed innovation processes and taught design thinking all over the world. Leon specializes in learning and integration of the professional, environmental and personal aspects of collaborative creativity. In parallel to his professional activities, Leon is a pilot and musician, and is currently producing a documentary film about education through jazz

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