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January 2022

Mohammad Anas Wahaj | 20 jan 2022

Design thinking is a concept that has found acceptance in many organizations and industries to develop a framework for creativity and innovation. The concept challenges the status quo and its application intends to bring distruptive change. The term 'design thinking' was first mentioned in the book 'Creative Engineering' by John E. Arnold that was published in 1959 and explained that the approach has 'the ability to resolve existent problems or propose an entirely new way of using a product, decrease production costs, and increase sales.' Many academics during 1960's started working to 'scienticize' design by understanding its characteristics, influences, processes, and methodologies. In the next decade 'design thinking' became popularized in various fields and the concept utilized 'creativity' as a means of addressing the accelerating need for innovation. Later on 'design thinking' evolved as a human-centered problem solving approach which utilizes the way consumers interact with a product as a basis to further develop it, instead of only relying on theoretical research, assumptions, and hypotheses. The approach involves various steps that include context analysis, observation, problem finding, brainstorming, ideation, creative thinking, sketching, prototyping, testing, and evaluating. It is a continuous improvement process and the steps may not be always in the same order. Design thinking is not specific to field of design and is utilized in variety of fields, disciplines, industries, markets etc. The early period of architectural study involves learning about the creative process of design, with an emphasis on individualistic expression, experimentation, and critical analysis, along with the basics of the technical and theoretical aspects of the profession. This provides the learner of architecture to look beyond the build space and explore and understand it as a response to the urban, communal, and environmental needs. Here the architect is thinking in a similar way as any other designer like graphic, web, interface, industrial etc, with just a different medium of implementation. Those architects that considered architecture discipline as too structured and traditional pursued careers in fields like UX design, design consultants, product and business innovation specialists etc. There they implemented their creative and innovative thinking and justified the shift. Many architects utilized design thinking approach within their profession to develop new systems for cities, buildings, and communities that are designed to fulfil the needs of the consumers instead of implementing the standard and traditional architectural approach. Even though many architects find it challenging to involve users in their creative process, a pre-requisite for design thinking process, but there is an overall scope to change and evolve the traditional architectural practice through design thinking approach. Read on...

ArchDaily: The Rise of the Design Thinking Movement and its Relation to Architecture
Author: Dima Stouhi



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