IDEO U

Design Thinking

Design thinking is a process for creative problem solving

What is design thinking?

Design thinking utilizes elements from the designer's toolkit like empathy and experimentation to arrive at innovative solutions. By using design thinking, you make decisions based on what future customers really want instead of relying only on historical data or making risky bets based on instinct instead of evidence.


“Design thinking is a human-centered approach to innovation that draws from the designer's toolkit to integrate the needs of people, the possibilities of technology, and the requirements for business success.”

Tim Brown
CEO OF IDEO


See Our Courses

Why Design Thinking

Design Thinking GraphicThinking like a designer can transform the way organizations develop products, services, processes, and strategy. This approach, which IDEO calls design thinking, brings together what is desirable from a human point of view with what is technologically feasible and economically viable. It also allows people who aren't trained as designers to use creative tools to address a vast range of challenges.

The 4 Phases of Design Thinking

gather

PHASE 1
GATHER INSPIRATION
Inspire new thinking by discovering what people really need.

generate

PHASE 2
GENERATE IDEAS
Push past obvious solutions to get to breakthrough ideas

make

PHASE 3
MAKE IDEAS TANGIBLE
Build rough prototypes to learn how to make ideas better

share

PHASE 4
SHARE YOUR STORY
Craft a human story to inspire others toward action

Learn Design Thinking

IDEO U's class and course offerings span all stages of the design thinking process.

  • HELLO DESIGN THINKING is an online introduction to design thinking, a process for creative problem solving.
  • Insights for Innovation will help you uncover insights about the unmet needs of your target audience. You’ll practice skills, like empathy and observation, to get to the heart of your business challenge.
  • From Ideas to Action will show you how to generate new ideas and bring them to life as a product or service. This approach to problem solving can be applied to any real world challenge.
  • Storytelling for Influence will help you motivate others toward action. Whether you need someone to back your organization, invest in your idea, or get excited about following your lead, storytelling can position you to succeed.
  • Leading for Creativity will help you unlock your organization's creative potential. You’ll learn how to break down a bold vision into actionable challenges, make adjustments to culture by designing rituals and space, and guide teams into the unknown through the process of experimentation.

Want to receive our 5 part email series introduction to design thinking? Sign up here!