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Providing innovative solutions to real-world problems


Challenge-driven Innovation with Design Thinking

7.5 credits

Autumn / Spring



This course is built up around assignments provided by players in the public or private sectors. “Design thinking” is used as a method and the aim is to present innovative solutions to real societal challenges. The course also encourages you to reflect individually on group dynamics, interdisciplinarity, and design thinking.

Information for exchange students

This course is also open for exchange students. Application information for exchange students.

Want to know why you should study at Södertörn University? Find out here.

Versatile problem-solving skills The method known as design thinking is becoming a global standard for problem solving in many industries, and will equip you for dealing with complex challenges through insight-driven innovation. It can be used in a wide range of fields and will be beneficial in whatever profession you choose to pursue. Read about research in this subject
Use design-based methods for work in an interdisciplinary team On this supplementary level course, you will use design-based methods to work with societal challenges in interdisciplinary teams. The assignments are provided by players in the public or private sectors, allowing you to apply discipline-specific knowledge in an interdisciplinary creative design process. You will learn how to define and delimit a societal design problem using interdisciplinary perspectives, as well as how to develop and test ideas and prototypes for innovations (products, services or processes) on the basis of a given problem. This innovation work will be visualised through sketches, models, and prototypes. This process, and the results of the innovation project will be communicated to collaborative parties in the private and public sectors, selected target audiences and interest groups. Throughout the course, you are encouraged to reflect upon collaboration and communication within interdisciplinary teams and design thinking as a concept. Course design The course is built up around workshops, group discussions, and joint presentations of project work, and is assessed through your participation in the workshops, group presentations, your oral and written presentation and the delivery of the innovation group project. It also includes a written individual reflection on the project.
User-oriented design methodology Work in interdisciplinary groups is an integral part of design thinking, a method that includes processes such as context analysis, problem definition, generating solutions and creative thinking, sketching, prototyping, testing and evaluation. It has been described as a process for innovation, something that requires inspiration and empathy in order to fulfil the needs of end users.