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What Is Human-Сentered Design and Why Does It Matter?

What is human-centered design?

Why do some products become popular and some not? Why do solutions for change fail?

One reason is that new products or idea creators usually strive for their product to be unique and exceptional, focus on economic aspects and optimization, but they forget about the people they are designing for. Consumer needs are not assessed and the environment in which the product or idea will be applied in is not taken into consideration.  

For solutions to get used, they must be human centered. Decision-making during the design process should be driven by people’s wants, needs and behavior. This is the human-centered design approach. According to IDEO.org, a human-centered design is a creative approach to problem solving that starts with the people you’re designing for and ends with new solutions that are tailored to suit their needs.

  Visual by Matt Avallone, IDEO.com

Visual by Matt Avallone, IDEO.com


Who can use a human-centered design approach?

This approach can be applied to all walks of life. It can help companies produce new products or services, solve real life problems, such as poverty, gender equality, clean water…etc.,  or can used to deal with one’s personal issues.

Florida Hospital for Children applied this methodology to redesign a hospital space in a way that reduced anxiety, made facilities more comfortable, and promoted efficiency, healing and togetherness. They achieved this by looking at both staff and patients experience from a human-centered perspective, and considered human connections.

Since its redesign, the hospital’s operational efficiency and staff morale have improved and more clients choose this hospital’s services. In fact, the hospital’s pediatric emergency room is now ranked top in the nation according patient/family satisfaction scores.

IDEO.org designers together with Moneythink and CauseLabs created digital tools to build financial literacy in Chicago’s public high schools. The mobile app that was developed using the human-centered design approach equipped students with tools they use to make spending decisions.

IDEO.org and CauseLabs worked closely with students to create an interactive, social mobile app.

  IDEO.org

IDEO.org


Where and how can you learn more about Human Centered Design?

You can take free online courses developed by IDEO.org:

1. Introduction to Human-Centered Design

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This spring you also have an amazing opportunity to participate in the America House Human-Centered Design Eco Challenge. We are accepting applications until May 18th. Selected applicants will participate for free. Don’t miss this chance to try the approach first hand with Human Centered Design expert Oleksandr Akymenko, well-recognized consultant and Platfor.ma, Yes&Design founder.

Human-Centered Design Eco Challenge.jpg

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