Tag Archives: human centered

The importance of user agency for good design in the humanitarian and development context

By | April 21, 2017

This is a topic that has come up so often on Twitter that I thought to write it out once and for all. A link would be ever so much easier to argue with than to make the case for recognizing the agency of the end user – whether an intended customer or beneficiary –… Read More »

New Market Analysis: It all boils down to Interpretation

By | September 13, 2014

This isn’t a new diagram for anyone familiar with my writing. Its a diagram I’ve been using to explain where my work fits into the innovation development process since I first saw it on Luke Wroblewski’s blog back in 2006. However, I’ve just been struck forcibly by the realization that there’s a very important piece… Read More »

Reflections on design thinking for government: empowering policy makers and stakeholders

By | January 20, 2013

Yesterday I came across a post on The World Bank’s blog, “Design Thinking for Government Services: What happens when the past limits our vision of the future?” Given that I’m in the process of writing a report on the role that human centered design can play in government, that too for a developed nation, I’d… Read More »

Why is design important?

By | September 4, 2012

Design is first and foremost a philosophy, based on a system of values, which seeks to solve problems. What are we creating? Why and for whom? Are we correctly framing the problem to be solved? These are the questions to which the answers are then manifested tangibly in the form of a new product, service… Read More »

Human centered design: Surprising insights from rural Kenya

By | January 20, 2012

One of the most surprising things that struck me over the past couple days of running around doing recce visits for our upcoming rural research was just how rapidly and how well the concept of the user centered design (UCD) process and thus, the human centered approach to research and development was not only understood… Read More »

The difference between what and why

By | January 17, 2012

Today’s meeting threw up an interesting observation that made me think about problem areas, how they’re identified and how they may be deconstructed. In simpler terms, the difference between the “what” and the “why”. Take two regions in a country, one far more fertile and having a better overall economy than the other. Yet both… Read More »

In conclusion: Lessons from The Village Telco project in Kenya

By | November 24, 2011

We’ve finally reached the point in our work for Village Telco where there’s been enough time for some reflection after the intense weeks of travel and observations across Kenya.  I can cluster our learning into three broad areas: our approach, methodology and team work; Kenya’s people and the informal economy; and finally, the role of… Read More »