Searching the web, you will see a plethora of design thinking process models that help explain what happens, when, to what, and why in the design process. When we use models, we aim to define steps in the design process. They can be linear, circular or iterative. Over the years, design thinking models have used a variety of terms, and they have differences and similarities in their stages. There is no one ‘right’ model. You may even be tempted to develop your own to suit a new context. The Table presents some of the best-known ones.[i] Analyzing the stages, Waloszek concludes that, despite some differences, the main stages in the design thinking process are similar among all models.[ii]
For a quick overview of a variety of process models, see Yavari, H. (n.d.). Design thinking methodologies. http://designthinkingmethodology.weebly.com/methodologies.html
Variety and similarity among design thinking process models
|Year||Source||Components of the process model|
|2001||IDEO/ Deloitte/ (Deepdive)||Understand and observe > Synthesise > Visualise > Prototype, evaluate, and refine > Implement[iii]|
|2005||British Design Council||Discover > Define > Develop > Deliver[iv]|
|2010||d.school Stanford||Empathise > Define > Ideate > Prototype > Test[v]|
|2011||d.school Paris||Inspiration (Understand, Observe, POV) > Ideation (Ideate, Prototype, Test) > Implementation (Storytelling, Pilot, Business Model)[vi]|
|2011||Hasso Plattner Institute of Design||Understand > Observe > Point of View > Ideate > Prototype > Test[vii]|
|2011||Kolko||Define > Discover > Synthesise > Construct > Refine > Reflect[viii]|
|2012||HCD - Human Centred Design||Hear > Create > Deliver[ix]|
|2012||IDEO||Discover > Interpret > Ideate > Experiment > Evolve[x]|
|2013||Google Ventures||Understand > Define > Diverge > Decide > Prototype[xi]|
|2014||Designing for Growth||What is? > What if? > What wows? > What works?[xii]|
|2015||Pontis||Understand > Empathise > Define > Ideate > Prototype > Test[xii]|
|2016||Meinel, Von Thienen||Empathise > Define persona > Ideate > Test prototypes > Bring home[xiii]|
We have integrated these models, and in Figure we present the seven-step ‘Etappe Design Thinking Process Model’ (etappe references the title of this book, Entrepreneurship Theory Process Practice, and also means ‘step’ in French) with its associated steps, goals, and methods.[xv]
See also The Mind of the Design Entrepreneur
[i] For a quick overview of a variety of process models, see Yavari, H. (n.d.). Design thinking methodologies. http://designthinkingmethodology.weebly.com/methodologies.html; Drahun, G. (2017). Design thinking diagrams. https://pt.slideshare.net/Hienadz.Drahun/design-thinking-diagrams.
[ii] Waloszek, G. (2012, September 12). Introduction to design thinking. https://experience.sap.com/skillup/introduction-to-design-thinking/ .
[iv] British Design Council (2005). The design process: What is the double diamond? http://www.designcouncil.org.uk/news-opinion/design-process-what-double-diamond.
[vi] d.school Paris (2011). Design thinking. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:IDEO_process.png.
[vii] Plattner, H., Meinel, C., & Weinberg, U. (2011). Design thinking : Innovation lernen – Ideenwelten öffnen. München: mi-Wirtschaftsbuch. https://hpi.de/school-of-design-thinking/design-thinking/publikationen.html.
[xi] Knapp, J. (2013, June 24). How to conduct your own Google Ventures design sprint. https://www.fastcompany.com/1672887/how-to-conduct-your-own-google-design-sprint; Knapp, J., Zeratsky, J., & Kowitz, B. (2016). Sprint: How to solve big problems and test new ideas in just five days. New York: Simon & Schuster https://www.thesprintbook.com/; Sniukas, M., Lee, P., Morasky, M., Andres Pabon, T., & LLC Gildan Media (n.d.). The art of opportunity: How to build growth and ventures through strategic innovation and visual thinking. Gildan Media, LLC https://goo.gl/ZUpfvZ
[xiii] Pontis, S. (2015, June 4). Design thinking revised. Retrieved from Mapping Complex Information. Theory and Practice website: https://sheilapontis.wordpress.com/2015/06/04/design-thinking-revised/
[xiv] Meinel, C., & von Thienen, J. (2016). Aktuelles schlagwort: Design thinking. Informatik Spektrum, 39(4), 310–14. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/303594901_Design_Thinking
[xv] Sources relied upon for this model: Plattner, Meinel, & Weinberg (2011). Design thinking : Innovation lernen – Ideenwelten öffnen; hannacharlottes (2014). Design thinking – Prozess | Denkwerkzeuge im Wissensmanagement. Retrieved from https://denkwerkzeuge.wordpress.com/tag/design-thinking-prozess/; Liedtka, Ogilvie, & Brozenske (2014). The designing for growth field book; Ratcliffe, J. (2009). Steps in a design thinking process: Process model from design thinking : Innovation lernen - Ideenwelten öffnen. Retrieved from https://dschool-old.stanford.edu/groups/k12/wiki/17cff/Steps_in_a_Design_Thinking_Process.html; Pontis, S. (2015, June 4). Design thinking revised. Retrieved from https://sheilapontis.wordpress.com/2015/06/04/design-thinking-revised/; Thoring, K., & Mueller, R. (2011). Understanding design thinking: A process model based on method engineering. Paper presented at International Conference On Engineering And Product Design Education, E&Pde’11. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/234065413_Understanding_design_thinking_A_process_model_based_on_method_engineering.