smallfire: design strategy, research & methods to support participation


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Building Organisational Co-design Capability

This week was the first Design 4 Social Innovation Conference in Sydney. An amazing two days of indepth discussion and examples of the real-world application of design for social innovation in Australia and overseas (see tweets Storified here). On day two of the conference I gave a Master Class on Building Organisational Co-design capability. The Master Class was based on my work with health, social and education organisations, as well as generous contributions and input from other practitioners and organisations reflecting on their own experiences#.



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Integrating User Experience and Evidence-based approaches to Design



Both Australia and NZ suffer from distressingly high youth suicide rates. Much of the work and research being undertaken to address this centres around the potential of online technologies to connect with young people in new ways, and to enable the delivery of new kinds of health and wellbeing interventions and services. Online services create the potential for self-directed and anonymous engagement and move the conversation to “where young people already are”. They also require quite a different design approach to interventions delivered within a traditional clinical setting.

Co-designing these services in collaboration with the young people they are designed to benefit provides the opportunity to learn more about how young people experience these issues, and ensures that what is designed has relevance in the world of young people. The presentation above, delivered for UXNZ in November last year, describes our journey to bring together user experience design and participatory approaches with the evidence-based models which traditionally underpin health promotion, intervention and treatment.  The presentation was developed in collaboration with @MariesaNicholas and @KittyRahilly and it shares insights and learning from work with the Inspire Foundation and the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre in Australia. The goal of these organisations is to develop effective evidence-based online, youth mental health and well being interventions in collaboration with the young people they are designed to benefit.

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Becoming Design-Led: Exploring the role of (co)design in libraries



Over the last few years I have had the opportunity to gain insight into the exciting challenges and changes being navigated by libraries through a close relationship with UTS Library, and co-design projects with AUT and Hurstville Libraries. These three organisations, like others around the world, are doing fantastic work exploring and responding to the changing face and role of libraries by working collaboratively with their staff, stakeholders and communities to co-design the library of the future. Continue reading…



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