Seminar on 5 Principles of Human-Centered Design

Interdisciplinary research,
education and capacity building

21 Dec 2017

Jose Colucci talks about the importance in understanding stakeholders’ needs and in creating prototypes

On December 20, the Director of Research and Development of the Design Institute for Health (DIH) of the Dell Medical School, Jose Colucci, presented a Seminar on 5 Principles of Human-Centered Design at FCT/UNL, within the UT Austin | Portugal Program.

To solve human problems applying methods of design, Colucci informed the design thinking happens at the intersections of viability and desirability in the context of emotional, process and functional innovation. This process will end up in an experience innovation and must involve more than rational thinking. “At the beginning of the process is most important insights and empathy”, he declares.

Colucci split the process into 5 ways to understand the users' needs. First, it is necessary to make questions to them, after observer them at their context. He showed some pictures of people’s routine, as a switch or a door, and revealed: “where you find a post-it, it is an indication there is a design failure”.

The third step is to look to the extremes. According to Colucci, if you prototype to these extremes, you will cover all the potential users. The two last points were focused on transcending the perspective and simulating the experiences. While a car race served as an inspiration to medical reality with the creation of specialized kits in emergency cases, the observation and tests improved the understanding of a defibrillator prototype usage.

In this process is important the prototypes to be rapid, rough and right, according to Colucci. The designers must consider the right question to be answered by the prototype and start to develop it the sooner the better. Colucci includes not only things, but also services, and presented his experience in service design.

His goal was to create a health service standard, where the patient could be an active agent and all stakeholders have their needs and expectation taken into account. “The strategy is to make the best experience possible for doctors, nurses, patients, all stakeholders. It is a good tactic of spreading the Design Thinking”.