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Design Strategy

Discussing Design and Data at the Dutch Design Week 2018

Last week I was invited to discuss Design and Data at the Dutch Design Week, a discussion led by Kees Dorst.

It was an interesting discussion. There is this moment where data either scares or enables. What is surely does is that it changes the role of the designer.

Data, machine learning, Ai, is something that has some form of autonomy. It’s either too big to control or it doesn’t tell us how it did what it did.

From architect to planner

Designers are used to be completely in control. In my view we’re making a shift from operating as an architect, who has a lot of control on the outcome, to the role of a city planner, who has limit control of the outcome, but more control of the playing field.

This also changes the capabilities a designer needs. (Digital) design is still growing up, we’re talking to different stakeholders on different levels than we did 10 years ago. Some of the worlds most valuable companies are design driven. Design is seen.

We’re being offered a seat at the table to drive from a persons view and advocate User Centred Design. To do this we must feel comfortable in new domains.

10 years ago you needed to know how a computer operates.

Now you need to know what data can do, how to read it and how to leverage it.