The area where business and design, design thinking if you will, come together is coalescing into a critical mass. For me, this shows signs of consolidation, that this will become a field of specialization, that may not be the darling of the media for much longer, but certainly will continue beyond it’s current "flavor of the month" status.
On CPH127, Hans Henrik has launched a much discussed conversation on holding a conference on the topic, something we had discussed over our Skype conference call earlier this summer. We thrashed out some of the initial concepts this morning and I’m looking forward to reading more about it’s progress and reception. On a global scale, this should provide a venue for budding practioners and experienced professionals alike. It looks very promising and I’m excited to be part of it at the early stages of it’s conception.
And Ralf has brought up the intriguing concept of a virtual Design Thinking Institute – perhaps a "wikipedia" like concept, Ralf, where we could all share our definitions and concepts, starting with the numerous ones on design thinking that Victor Lombardi has collated on his blog? Victor’s also an impetus in this momentum organizing a "conversation on innovation" next week at Haas.
While on the topic, why not lay the foundation for an organization or association for professionals in this general area – the interface between business and design, identified as one of key sources of innovation by Bruce Nussbaum. With the amount of fuzziness surrounding the field, so much so that I prefer calling it an interface or an interstitial space, rather than defining it, means that while on one hand you have the media exhorting corporate America to wake up and smell the Creative coffee (or design kool aid)
but on the other hand, where do good product managers, brand managers and marketing VP’s go to obtain said benefits? As I tried to differentiate between the "traditional" design approach and the so called "design thinking" approach in my previous post, (and I hope to elaborate that further soon), where does one start to source innovation? Or at least, to find people that could possibly work with you to facilitate the brainstorming process that would lead to new approaches or strategies. That’s why I think perhaps an Innovation Professionals Association (not a real name, just a placeholder for the purposes of this post) could be a good start to consolidate, collate and collaborate (not to mention alliterate 🙂 for the "Creative Economy".