IDEA-GENERATION: EXPLORING A CO-CREATION METHODOLOGY USING ONLINE SUBJECT MATTER EXPERTS, GENERATIVE TOOLS, FREE ASSOCIATION, AND

STORYTELLING DURING THE PRE-DESIGN PHASE

A Thesis Presented in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for The Degree Master of Fine Arts in the Graduate School of The Ohio State University

By Teresa Ung *****

The Ohio State University 2009

Master’s Examination Committee: R. Brian Stone, Adviser Dr. Elizabeth B.-N. Sanders Professor James W. Arnold

Approved by Adviser Graduate Program, Industrial, Interior, and Visual Communication Design

c 2009 All rights reserved.

ABSTRACT

This research explores a new methodology for idea-generation with multi-disciplinary design teams demonstrating alternative ideation techniques and brainstorming facilitation. Innovators may use this methodology to enhance their company’s enthusiasm toward a project, link and generate different ideas together, or train newcomers in a team-building exercise. Researchers can use this dynamic moderator approach that involves careful timing to conduct a compact brainstorming session. Design educators may challenge their teaching styles with various parts of this methodology to encourage their students to practice thinking more broadly and gathering out-of-the-box ideas into one narrative by using the compiled, tested techniques in this study.

Current idea-generation methods range from traditional methods such as focus groups, to non-traditional social networking platforms such as GUNGEN used in Japan. However, little to no information details an approach that leverages a combination of social networking channels such as wiki communities to co-create with design teams, while combining generative tools and free association for storytelling during the pre-design phase.

Six separate workshops were facilitated at the respective job sites of the participants. Each group was comprised of six to eight professionals screened and recruited through a contact person who also participated in the hour-long ideation workshop. A total of

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twenty-nine participants tested the methodology.

The results reveal novel associations with mundane objects, which add imagination and cohesion to these objects when formulated into storytelling. As a vehicle for collaborative ideation, this methodology is intended for group motivation and idea enhancement in a cost-effective way. It is aimed to benefit those who are thought leaders, and regularly work with ideas to innovate, manage, strategize, educate, moderate, research, and design, without the time or money to go on a creative retreat.

A qualitative research approach was applied to this exploration. Successive workshops followed an experiential-feedback strategy that built on top of modifications determined by the moderator’s experience from each previous workshop. Data was collected by video capture, audio documentation, and post-workshop questionnaires. More specifically, the methodology began with an immersion phase where online subject matter experts from wiki communities interacted with the design team. This was followed by a one-hour workshop consisting of four parts: part one was a group discussion on wikis; part two was an individual activity practicing free association; part three was a simulation of field research; and part four consisted of the group brainstorming activity and storytelling.

In the end, the findings revealed distinctive patterns between company culture and the range of ideas generated by the design teams more familiar with the participatory methods of ideation. The following discussion describes how this methodology may be applied to various stages of the design process as a co-creation method and a powerful aid to design problem solving.

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For Stan.

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

My deepest appreciation goes to my Graduate Studies Committee: Dr. Elizabeth B.N. Sanders for her inspiration, guidance, and intellectual enthusiasm; R. Brian Stone, my Adviser, for weathering the good, the bad, and the ugly–not letting anything stand in my way; and James W. Arnold for challenging my direction and offering a fresh perspective to make the completion of this work possible. I want to thank the Department of Design for providing support and a rewarding teaching opportunity to aid my graduate work. Most of all, I extend my deepest gratitude to Stanley Lin–a mentor and an old friend. Thanks for being my eyes and ears when I need it most!

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VITA

2001-2005................ B. A. Emphasis in Graphic Design, Minor in Photography San José State University 2005-2006................ Freelance designer San Francisco, CA 2006-present.............. Graduate Teaching Associate The Ohio State University, Department of Design

FIELD OF STUDY Major Field: Industrial, Interior, and Visual Communication Design

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page Abstract.......................... ............................................................. ii Dedication.................................................................................... iv Acknowledgments.......................................................................... vi Vita............................................................................................ vii List of Tables.................... ............................................................. xi List of Figures................................................................................ xii

Chapters 0 Preface 0.1 Purpose......................................................................... xv 0.2 Audience........................................................................ xix 0.3 Format.......................................................................... xx

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Introduction 1.1 1.2 Overview: Research scope................................................... 1 Objective...................................................................... 2

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Background 2.1 Introduction: Inspirations.................................................... 6

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2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9

Market research: Common brainstorming approaches..................... 8 Idea-generation: Innovate even with no money............................. 12 Co-creation: Applied in the pre-design phase............................... 13 Social networking and crowdsourcing....................................... 13 Free association: Using semantic knowledge............................... 14 Field research simulation: Scavenger hunt.................................. 16 Storytelling..................................................................... 18 Generative tools research: Inspirations for materials....................... 19

2.10 Application to the design process: Intended case and conditions......... 19 2.11 Operational definitions........................................................ 20

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Methodology 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 3.9 Introduction: Process......................................................... 24 Timeline of workshop events................................................ 29 Workshop approach: Modifying based on precedence.................... . 30 User definition................................................................ 30 Recruitment sampling: Criteria and script.................................. 30 Finding contact persons: Who they were................................... 32 Pilot Study..................................................................... 32 Immersion for participants: Activity to stir questions and discussions.. . 32 Pre-workshop checklist: For moderator..................................... 34

3.10 Moderator script: Timing and improvisation............................... 34 3.11 Workshop site selection...................................................... 34 3.12 Workshop equipment and materials......................................... 36 3.13 Workshop site, equipment, and materials set-up........................... 40 3.14 Individual activity: Timing and Associative cues.......................... 40

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3.15 Field study simulation: Scavenger hunt.................................... . 41 3.16 Group activity: Timing and moderator participation....................... 42 3.17 Cat’s Cradle: Storyteller steps out........................................... 43 3.18 Group activity role play: Storyteller and explainer........................ . 44 3.19 Questionnaires................................................................ . 48 3.20 Pamphlet and gift cards...................................................... . 50 3.21 Post-Workshop moderator tasks............................................. . 50 3.22 Sorting data: video, audio, questionnaires, and notes...................... 51

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Results 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 Introduction: What to expect................................................. . 52 Timelines of workshop events: How it unfolded........................... . 52 Workshop approach: What was modified.................................... 54 Recruitment samples: Who participated.................................... . 60 Finding the contact persons: Who they were and what they provided.... 61 Pilot Study..................................................................... . 61 Immersion for participants: Questions and answers........................ 61 Moderator script evolution: Reasons and responses....................... . . 63 Workshop site selection....................................................... . 63

4.10 Workshop equipment and materials: Documenting modifications........ . 64 4.11 Workshop site, equipment, and materials set-up: Variations............... . 65 4.12 Individual activity: Documentation.......................................... . 65 4.13 Field study simulation/Scavenger hunt: Object selections................. . 68 4.14 Group activity: Collages...................................................... . 68 4.15 Cat’s Cradle: Timing and responses......................................... . .72 73 4.16 Group activity role play: Selection and responses.......................... . .

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4.17 Analysis I: Questionnaires ................................................... . . 74 4.18 Analysis II: Collages & material usage ..................................... . .79 4.19 Analysis III: Company cultures.............................................. . . 89 4.20 Pamphlets and gift cards: Responses........................................ . . 92 4.21 Post-workshop moderator tasks: Observations and documentations...... . 92 4.22 Summary....................................................................... . . 92

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Conclusion 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 Benefits: Flexibility of methodology......................................... . 94 Guidelines: For moderator.................................................... . 94 Materials: Selectivity based on design process............................. . . 95 Immersion activity: Managing time and increasing feedback............. . 97 Individual activity: Script modification for future use..................... . . 97 Group activity: Script modification for future use.......................... . 98 Limitations of study........................................................... . 98 Directions for future research................................................ . 99

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Next Steps 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Overview....................................................................... . .101 Further Explorations: Application to the design process................... . .103 Extended Data Analysis....................................................... . 112 Continued Investigation: Wiki immersion activity......................... . . 113

Appendix: Supplementary Information..................................................... . 115 References Cited.............................................................................. . 124

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LIST OF TABLES

Page Table 1: Questionnaire results spreadsheet WS 2.......................................... . 75 Table 2: Questionnaire results spreadsheet WS 3.......................................... . 76 Table 3: Questionnaire results spreadsheet WS 4.......................................... . 77 Table 4: Questionnaire results spreadsheet WS 5.......................................... . 78 Table 5: Material usage count............................................................... . 88

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LIST OF FIGURES

Page Figure 1: Parnes’ Creative Problem Solving Model versus the Design Process....... . .xviii Figure 2: Workshop Process.. ............................................................. . 24 Figure 3: Workshop process: Wiki immersion............................................ 24 Figure 4: Workshop process: Wiki Discussion........................................... . 25 Figure 5: Workshop process: Individual Activity........................................ . 26 Figure 6: Field research simulation........................................................ 26 Figure 7: Workshop process: Group activity.............................................. 27 Figure 8: Workshop process: Questionnaire.............................................. . 28 Figure 9: Intended timeline... .............................................................. 28 Figure 10: Recruitment Script............................................................... 30 Figure 11: Discussion Guide... .............................................................. 32 Figure 12: Moderator’s Script and Timing................................................. . 34 Figure 13: Materials-Images left to right: Individual Activity, Group Activity.......... 36 Figure 14: Materials-Tray set up............................................................ . 37 Figure 15: Materials-Wiki set up ........................................................... . 37 Figure 16: Materials-Room set up.......................................................... . 38 Figure 17: Questionnaire..................................................................... .48 Figure 18: Pamphlet gift card.. ............................................................. . 49 Figure 19: Workshop process: Revised durations......................................... . 52 .

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Figure 20: Workshop duration and changes................................................ . .54 Figure 21: Materials tray 1..... ............................................................. . . 55 Figure 22: Materials tray 2..... ............................................................. . . .55 Figure 23: Materials tray 3..... ............................................................. . . 56 Figure 24: WS 3 participants exploring materials......................................... . . 57 Figure 25: WS 5 people during the group collaging activity.............................. . 58 Figure 26: Contacts & participants.......................................................... . 59 Figure 27: WS 4 café and lounge area...................................................... . .63 Figure 28: Workshop site configurations................................................... . . 65 Figure 29: WS 2 Individual activity-6 participant samples............................... . . 66 Figure 30: Group activity collage-WS 1.................................................... . 69 Figure 31: Group activity collage-WS 2.................................................... . 70 Figure 32: Group activity collage-WS 3.................................................... . 70 Figure 33: Group activity collage-WS 4.................................................... . 71 Figure 34: Group activity collage–WS 5................................................... . . 71 Figure 35: Storytelling WS 3................................................................ . .73 Figure 36: All Workshops-Strongly Agree Analysis I..................................... . 82 Figure 37: All Workshops-Strongly Agree Analysis II.................................... . . 83 Figure 38: All Workshops-Strongly Disagree Analysis I.................................. . 84 Figure 39: All Workshops-Strongly Disagree Analysis II................................. . 85 Figure 40: All Workshops-Neutral Analysis I.............................................. . .86 Figure 41: All Workshops-Neutral Analysis II............................................. . .87 Figure 42: Company Profiles for WS 1-5................................................... . 90 Figure 43: Company Personalities & Characteristics: WS 1-5........................... . . 91 Figure 44: Types of Jobs (Ulwick, 2005)................................................... . .105 Figure 45: Recap–scenario 3. The last step of free association using symbolic objects. .109

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Figure 46: Recruitment script (alternate)................................................... . 116 Figure 47: Moderator script.... .............................................................. 117 Figure 48: Guidelines for ideation workshop part I....................................... . 118 Figure 49: Guidelines for ideation workshop part II....................................... 119 Figure 50: Guidelines for ideation workshop part III..................................... . 120 Figure 51: Immersion instructions part I................................................... . 121 Figure 52: Immersion instructions part II................................................... 122 Figure 53: Moderator’s pre-workshop checklist........................................... . 123

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PREFACE

0.1 Purpose My study is one of exploration. Exploration, according to Princeton University’s Wordnet dictionary is “to travel for the purpose of discovery; a careful systematic search; or systematic consideration.” My original exploration was to find different techniques for generating a lot of ideas. Traversing these techniques, I found myself repurposing these separate methods into one unique combination–not only for idea generation, but also to corporate the idea of an enjoyable experience. My new methodology explored idea generation through cocreation using online subject matter experts, generative tools, and free association in storytelling for the pre-design phase. While the individual techniques adapted into this study essentially had been proven by researchers as viable means for individual and group ideation, this study explores them in an entirely new combination and format. My investigation was also a qualitative one. Qualitative research was defined in Moderating To the Max as collecting data, reporting facts, obtaining reactions, and seeking for “what is.” In qualitative research, convergent thinking is active. Convergent thinking is using judgment, evaluation, and deliberation in reviewing data (Bystedt, Lynn, Potts, 2003). The role I took as both the researcher and moderator of the workshops was to use my judgment, evaluation, and deliberation to identify the current state of design team collaborations, push that limit, and then document the responses of that process to

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note any discoveries that resulted from this methodology. Another part of my investigation was the pursuit of idea generation, or ideation. Ideation is “about what could be, or the process of eliciting responses or ideas (Bystedt, Lynn, Potts, 2003),” which was the role of the participants. The main characteristic of the participants’ role was divergent thinking, which involved “deferral of judgment, proposing the unusual, striving for quantity.” (Bystedt, Lynn, Potts, 2003) By combining the qualitative and exploratory nature of the methodology, the process resulted in an ideation workshop. In setting up the workshop, I began learning about the contexts of online subject matter experts, generative tools, free association, and storytelling and then combining these studied methods into one sixty-minute ideation session. Five separate design teams participated in my on-site workshop, which comprised of six to eight professionals who were unique to their company’s design needs and had prior experience working as a team. The professionals who participated had various backgrounds. There were marketers, engineers, writers, designers, researchers, and company executives who had shown interest in this methodology. These different professionals were employees of companies that provided services ranging from insurance to design research. They participated and gave feedback about their experiences of the methodology. With each group’s feedback, successive workshops incorporated modifications made from the moderator’s ongoing observational analyses. Data analysis was in accordance to Dr. Elizabeth B.-N. Sanders’ (MakeTools, LLC) personal guidance. My tasks included transcribing the sessions, organizing data, documenting observations, and detecting common threads across the companies that participated. Data were also analyzed using the basic coding process described in John W. Creswell’s Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches, 2nd Edition. “Coding,” Creswell defines, “is the process of organizing the materials into

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chunks or segments of text before bringing meaning into the information. It involves taking data or pictures gathered during data collection, segmenting sentences, or images into categories, and labeling those categories with a term.” Because each workshop was modified based on feedback from the preceding workshop, the nature of this qualitative research was not designed as an experiment. Therefore, the results of this exploration might not provide definitive results, but instead introduced new areas of discovery in generating ideas and different techniques in solving problems. (See Chapter 6 “Next Steps.”) Where does this fit in the Creative Problem-solving Process? Idea generation is only a part of this process. “A problem well-defined is a problem half-solved.” (Bystedt, Lynn, Potts, 2003) Therefore an effective creative problem-solving model, or a model addressing the following broad processes is the whole picture: defining the problem or challenge, generating ideas, and planning for action. (Parnes, 1981) The current methodology incorporates the first two processes, however the “planning for action” is found in the sections for Further Explorations (Chapter 6.2 “Further Explorations”). In the first process, participants in this study were given rapid scenarios to generate metaphors that were used as design constraints to frame their problem. The second process consisted of generating ideas for possible solutions in a group activity. Participants were asked to use generative tools to finish the sentence, “My intelligent machine or tool will look and feel like this…” and illustrating their ideas in a collage. In contrast to the Parnes’ model of Creative Problem-solving Process, divergence is the first step of the Design Process. In the Design Process, creative problem solving begins with exploring without constraints in the divergence phase. Ideas are then filtered through the next step of the Design Process called the transformation phase, which introduces the constraints surrounding the problem. This second phase also introduces some divergence within the new boundaries. The last phase of the design process is

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convergence. This is similar to Parnes’ “planning for action.” Filtered ideas are combined with possible new ideas from the transformation phase and selected for prototyping or possible directions to pursue the solution. The Design Process and the Creative Problemsolving Process both provide a general sequence for creative problem solving; however this methodology focuses on the pre-design phase of generating ideas. The pre-design phase occurs before the design process. Individuals concern themselves with exploring and generating a plethora of ideas from the same frame of reference using Edward De Bono’s Random Word technique as inspiration. However, the random word is not selected from De Bono’s list, but from the individual activity that prompts the participants to generate words based on scenarios. This methodology serves as a qualitative research vehicle to solicit professional feedback on ideation techniques, and as a tool for generating a lot of new ideas.

define problem or challenge

generate ideas

plan for action

divergence

transformation
filter with constraints

convergence
solution to problem; prototyping; testing

explore without constraints

Figure 1: Parnes’ Creative Problem Solving Model versus the Design Process

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0.2 Audience “To become a successful developer of new products it appears that one must first become a successful developer of new ideas.” (Sowry, 1989) This exploration is intended for individuals invested in developing new ideas and new ways of solving problems. How does one encourage creative thinking? How does a design team come up with new ideas? What kind of brainstorming methods can spark more relevant ideas? These are all questions that creative leaders or teams of varied professionals must address in order to have a sustainable and competitive advantage in their markets. The key is finding an effective strategy that allows design teams to explore creative outlets while addressing their client’s problem from a new vantage point. This perspective involves being more aware of one’s surroundings and bringing unrelated elements and objects together to develop new ideas. Creative individuals play the roles of our innovators, researchers, educators–all whom are our problem-solvers. They grapple with thought processes such as, “Why is X like Y? If X works in a certain way, why can’t Y work in a similar way? Alexander Graham Bell observed the similarities between the inner workings of the ear and the ability of a stout piece of membrane to move steel, and conceived the telephone. Thomas Edison invented the phonograph, in one day, after developing an analogy between a toy funnel and the motions of a paper man and sound vibrations. Moreover, the way buzzards kept their balance in flight served as an analogy for the Wright brothers when they were developing how to maneuver and stabilize an airplane. (Michalko, 2001)”

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Over the past three decades, researchers have developed many creative problemsolving techniques. In product development there’s Nash (1945) and Cooper (1988) exploring a small selection of idea generation techniques used for new product development; Clemens and Thornton (1968) describing gap analysis, and Stein (1974) with creative problem solving (Sowrey, 1989). This thesis provide valuable insights for innovators, researchers, moderators, and educators who are focused on generating copious ideas and solving problems by shifting their individual, or team’s, paradigm of thinking.

0.3 Format The proposed methodology is documented as a reflective case study with lessons learned and salient observations for further investigation. The Preface and Background chapters discuss the premises of this exploration. The Methodology and Results chapters offer step-by-step descriptions of how this exploration is set up and the resulting observations and data collection. Finally, wrapping up this discussion are the chapters on Conclusion and Next Steps. The Conclusion summarizes the observational task analyses done throughout the case studies, and Next Steps speculate possible discoveries that aid future investigations on application of this methodology. Exploring new ways to perceive problems and new attitudes to seek for solutions is the primary motivation for exploring more ideas. Paul Linus once said, “The key to good ideas is more ideas!” On this note, this venture does not stop at exploration, but continued learning how to shift one’s paradigm of thinking–turning every rock unturned for places where the solution may be in a completely new context that is not typically explored. So what does this ideation methodology achieve? The results are telling of the high potential for new discoveries in conducting qualitative research, team building and training, and generating out-of-box ideas. Results of this exploration contributed

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insights on how to develop a more enjoyable research and ideation sessions that stimulate participation and enthusiasm, which will be discussed in Chapter 5: Results. What does this methodology not achieve? The main limitation to this methodology is its premature state to conclude any solid evidence of demonstrative results. It does not solve a specific problem during its trial. Nor does it have a decided result to conclude. While participants are not required to be in any specific field, they must however have prior experience collaborating with fellow participants selected for the session. More on benefits and applications of this methodology are discussed in Chapters 5 and 6.

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CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Overview: Research Scope “Designers do not merely design. They are economists, engineers, inventors, mechanics, educators, and anthropologists,” Bruce Mau emphasized in his 2007 Massive Change visit to The Ohio State University. Taking a closer look at the interconnectivity between people in a world brimming of information, a disconnect appears in aggregating many ideas into workable narratives. This is where designers can play an emerging role– wearing multiple “hats”–to bridge this gap (De Bono, 1992). Multi-disciplinary design teams make up a typical strategic team that functions as a think-tank to generate solutions to real world problems. This research presents a method that attempts to bridge the vehicles of communication with not only words, but combining visuals, storytelling, crowd-sourcing through co-design, and props that generate ideas. The focus of this ideation method is in exploration. It is not limited to the pre-design phase, but may be applied in the design process with an object-oriented objective as well. Unique components of this proposed method lies in the moderating, associative thinking, and storytelling aspects of a given ideation session. This myriad of techniques aims to bring out the semantic knowledge within each person in a brainstorming session. “Leonardo Di Vinci believed that to gain knowledge about the form of a problem, you began by learning how to restructure it

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to see it in many different ways.” (Michalko, 2001) Ideas generated from this proposed ideation method may aid in solving future design problems in more enjoyable group sessions. Additional literature reviews investigate market research on brainstorming approaches, idea-generation, co-creation, social networking, crowdsourcing, free association, field research, storytelling, and different generative tools. These concepts were applied to a four-part workshop designed to provide a platform to step into and out of the shoes of the target prosumer, or one who actively contributes to the making of products used. Then to apply the method, a series of six workshops, including a pilot study, were held at various on-site locations where the participants would typically aggregate for idea-generation sessions.

1.2 Objective The objective of this research was to explore a new idea-generation methodology. The initial structure was to compare the amount of ideas generated by two design teams from a large (over 1,000 employees) and a small company (less than 25 employees). However, after the recruitment invitations initially went out to four companies, the responses were lacking. Three months later, the urgency to find willing professionals to participate increased. Another six different companies were invited. Five of the six companies expressed interest. With five companies willing to participate, the structure of the initial experiment evolved from comparing two companies into exploring how the new methodology might be improved after visiting each company to improve on the flow and clarity of its deliverance. Each workshop was an hour-long. They were held on-site where the design teams typically met for their brainstorming sessions. Each design team was provided with the same materials–with the option of including their own as relevant–and asked to combine

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their ideas in a group collage. The collage was presented in two narratives. The first was improvised to stretch the imagination, and the second was a logical explanation of the articles represented in the group collage. The purpose of this methodology was to explore how seemingly unrelated ideas could came together and possibly generate new and different ideas by when combined with online collaboration that harnessed subject matter experts, generative tools, free association, and storytelling. This study aimed to stretch the regular paradigm of design thinking and targeted an alternative way of problem solving. The underlying approach of the methodology was to keep stimulating the imagination with scenarios–provided at first but created through storytelling later–and kept the flow of ideas unrestricted in an enjoyable manner. Unrestricted ideas were encouraged throughout the ideation workshop. One of the groundrules repeated most often for this pre-design idea-generation methodology was, “There’s are no wrong answers.” However, if this methodology was applied to an object-oriented problem, then design constraints would be inevitable, and wrong answers would be the irrelevant ideas. The design constraints would serve as the filtration system for the ideas generated. When applying an object-oriented problem into this methodology, the design team should first define the specific problem statements. Then frame the problem statements as scenarios that resemble stories (For more details, see Chapter 6.2). Finally, generate ideas using this methodology during the divergence phase of the Design Process (divergence, transformation, and convergence). This methodology was conducted with a focus on the pre-design phase. Therefore the scenarios were intentionally fluid and abstract to allow room for open interpretation. Participants were encouraged to stretch their imagination to depict their personal experiences and emotions during the activities. For example, the individual activity asked participants to describe something that was a “no-brainer” and “pleasurable” with no

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limitations on their answers. Then the group activity prompted them to finish a sentence that described the “look and feel” of an intelligent machine or tool. The suggested experiential queues were alluded in the request for descriptions of a “no-brainer” task and the “look” of an intelligent machine or tool. The attempted emotional queues were triggered by asking for descriptions of something “pleasurable” in the individual activity, and what the “feel” of an intelligent machine or tool would be like for the group collage. The pre-design phase allowed less emphasis on right or wrong answers and more attention to an experiential and emotional visualizaton. In the ideal application of this methodology, more time should be rationed for the predesign phase and the Design Process should be conducted with a very focused purpose of generating many different ideas. This methodology consisted of the wiki immersion, individual activity, field research simulation or scavenger hunt, group collage, and finally storytelling. In an ideal scenario, the wiki immersion exercise should be a wiki website initiated by a company as a brainstorming medium to co-create with online subject matter experts. The wiki website ought to be very focused and clear in what it should ask participants to do and how their contribution should be rewarded, with intellectual property forfeited, if selected for further idea-generation processes. Once relevant online subject matter experts had their window of time to contribute ideas, the design team should also have an opportunity to integrate their ideas into the wiki website as well. Then selected ideas from both the online subject matter experts and the design team should be listed on the wiki website. That should conclude the online collaboration. (More details on this process, see Chapter 6.4 “Continued Investigation.”) From this filtered list of ideas, the design team should select two ideas as the prompt for the individual activity within the design team. The field research simulation, or scavenger hunt, was intentially focused on connecting images and words symbolically with objects. It should follow the individual activity. The ideal situation should also suggest that the group collage and improvised

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storytelling should be the time to not only integrate concepts, but help conjure new or other unexpected ideas to be documented concurrently or recorded on video for later analysis. It is important to note that regardless of how familiar or unfamiliar the design teams would be to participatory approaches, this methodology provides the room for all design teams to discover different and possibly novel ways to use otherwise mundane objects.

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CHAPTER 2

BACKGROUND

2.1 Introduction: Inspirations “Genius is often marked by the ability to imagine comparisons and similarities and even similar differences between parallel facts and events in different fields or ‘other worlds.’” (Michalko, 2001) Novel thinking and creativity need a shift of paradigm from the mainstream thought in order to occur. “Thinking what no one else is thinking” is one of the key exercises Michael Michalko suggests in Cracking Creativity. (Michalko, 2001) His strategy of “looking in other worlds” inspired the free association activities presented in this study. Variations of the immersion activity, generative tools, and storytelling approaches were first introduced by Dr. Elizabeth B.-N. Sanders’ graduate seminar class at The Ohio State University. Concepts from that course were adapted to this methodology by applying different orientations for the immersion activity, generative tools, and storytelling. The motivation for exploring innovative ways to generate ideas is not a new one. However, this methodology explores an atypical combination and timing for its activities that suggest high potential for generating a high volume of ideas. The synthesis of this rapid-activity approach was adopted from informal interviews with executives and designers from Nike, Yahoo!, local design firms, and design research companies. The interviewees shared personal practices that promoted innovation through focused fun.

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Most importantly, they expressed how much they valued their liberty to explore. “There is a growing recognition that fostering a culture of innovation is critical to success, as important as mapping out competitive strategies or maintaining good margins.” (Kelley, 2005) “Today, companies are valued less for their current offerings than for their ability to change and adapt and dream up something new. Whether you sell consumer electronics or financial services, the frequency with which you must innovate and replenish your offerings is rapidly increasing.” (Kelley, 2005) In a recent Boston Consulting Group survey covering nearly fifty countries and all sorts of businesses reported that nine out of ten senior executives believe generating growth through innovation is essential for success in their industry. (Kelley, 2005) The creative brillance of an inspired person is only the beginning of the innovation challenge. (Govindarajan & Trimble, 2005) Innovation also needs to be active in a company’s business model and culture as well. This methodology does not suggest to generate ideas limited to products or services, but the execution of these ideas may also be the topic for ideation as well. “It’s not the idea that counts; it is what you do with it.” (Govindarajan & Trimble, 2005) What to do with these ideas need to be well planned and executed. The advantage of this methodology is its flexibility in brainstorming any type of problem. If the problem can be framed in a scenario, it can be the focused theme for discussion. Not only can this study be used to explore idea generation, as its original intention, but it may also help develop strategies for business plans, organization reconfigurations, and management dilemmas. Paint it into a scenario and it will fit into this methodology. In contrast to a typical hour-long meeting may seem like eternity, this approach to brainstorming was unanimously enjoyable for the five separate groups of participating design teams. In this context, a design team refers to a group of individuals gathered together to brainstorm solutions to a problem. Often times they are also

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responsible for executing these plans. Just having an idea is not enough. Having many ideas is the key. These ideas are not limited to what the solution to a problem looks like, but also address how to deligate the tasks, who the constituents will be, and how the project should pan out. Having strong ideas for innovation also require strong ideas for execution to see them through. The power of this methodology lies in its components that have been proven for creative-thinking rigor. More emphasis is put on Edward De Bono’s lateral thinking methods; (De Bono, 1992) Michael Michalko’s international think-tank concepts; Elizabeth B.-N. Sanders’ participatory research methods that explore the emotional vocabulary of participants; Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams’ long-running collaborations and programs studying how the Web (sometimes called Web 2.0) changes the corporation and how companies build relationships, market, and compete; (Tapscott & Williams, 2006) and Anthony W. Ulwick’s outcome-driven programs that structurize the unpredictability of innovation. (Ulwick, 2005) Although this exploration shows great potential to generate out-of-the-box ideas, it does not aim to yield specific ideas in the time frame of a single brainstorming meeting. This study serves as an alternative system open for further exploration and experimentation. The case studies conducted here are not necessarily repeatable in exactitude. However, the concept and structure are duplicatable. Because the participants impact the dynamics of qualitative research, the reproducibility of this study is heavily dependent on the comfort levels of participants. (To explore applications of all or part of this ideation methodology, see Chapter 6 “Next Steps.”)

2.2 Market Research: Competitive brainstorming approaches A prosperous company strives to refine their ideation technique towards innovation. “Because innovation is the lifeblood of all organizations...There is no longer any serious

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debate about the primacy of innovation to the health and future strength of a corporation. Even the staid British publicataion The Economist recently claimed, ‘Innovation is now recognized as the single most important ingredient in any modern economy.’ And what The Economist said about nations is equally true about organizations...while we at IDEO used to spend the majority of our time in the world of product-based innovation, we have more recently come around to seeing innovation as a tool for transforming the entire culture of organizations...They need innovation at every point of the compass, in all aspects of the business and among every team member. Building an environment fully engaged in positive change, and a culture rich in creativity and renewal, means creating a company with 360 degrees of innovation. And companies that want to succeed at innovation will need new insights. New viewpoints.” (Kelley, 2005) Generating new viewpoints is a practice in idea-generation, or more commonly known as brainstorming. In the past, when companies refer to “brainstorming” they meant a few selected individuals meeting around a table to talking about ideas without anything more than a notepad and pen to take notes. The term was first coined by Alex Osborn in 1938 and popularized by his book, Applied Imagination, published in 1958. (Holt, 1996) More recently, design companies such as IDEO have revolutionized brainstorming to focus more on the dynamics of a group and an open environment for creative thinking. (Kelley, 2001) Common traditional brainstorming practices include total quality flow charts; mess maps; mindscapes; concept maps; and mind maps. “A brainstorming session,” according to Osborn’s technique, “comprises statement of the problem, idea generation, selection of the best idea, critical examination and enrichment of the idea, and presentation of the result to those concerned. The best results of the idea generation step are usually obtained by a heterogeneous group of four to seven persons.” (Holt, 1996) However, a known drawback to this method is that it is prone to “incompetent leaders, dominating

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individuals, passive individuals, inability to cooperate, fear of being foolish, and disturbing interruptions,” that are not prevented by the method itself. Another creative thinking approach is brainwriting. Originally developed by Bernd Rohrbach in the 1960s as Method 635, this strategy focuses on writing three ideas on a piece of paper in five minutes, which is then circulated to other participants to do the same. (Holt, 1996) A modification to this is circulating the ideas through internal email allowing any duration of time to write the three ideas down, which may take hours to days on end. By the early 1970s, researchers from Battelle Institute in Frankfurt developed a more flexible variation called brainwriting pool. (Holt, 1996) Ideas are written on separate sheets of paper and placed in the center of a table. Each participant adds to this pool. When an idea is triggered by another person’s paper from the pool, the sheets are exchanged. (Holt, 1996) These two brainwriting techniques have been proven to give good results. (Holt, 1996) One will expect a multidisciplinary group to consist of both left and right brainers, but after credibility and expertise is established between the members of the group, the take-away from an ideation session is whether or not it was enjoyable and stimulating. Not until 1984 did a more sophisticated method using computer-aided brainstorming (CAB) for stimulating and structuring ideas arise with Seth Hollander’s master thesis at Dartmouth College, NH on “Computer-assisted creativity and the policy process.” (Holt 1996) Since then a number of computer-assisted creativity (CAC) software products, such as Electronic Brainstorming by University of Arizona, Operation Brainstorm lead by Robert L.A. Trot with a global ‘think-tank’ with Asia, Europe, and US, and a software called Fluvius, developed by Horst Geschka, for the generation and evaluation of ideas, have been developed. (Holt 1996) A prevailing advantage of CAC software is its proven value in the whole problem solving process stimulating creative thinking, evaluation, structuring, and presenting results. (Holt 1996) “Many studies have also compared using verbal brainstorming to groups using an electronic technique based

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upon individual poolwriting, but very few studies have investigated groups using other electronic meeting techniques.” (Aiken, 2007) More inventive brainstorming today includes crowdsourcing, or out-sourcing to the masses through the Internet, and using social networking web sites through the World Wide Web to disseminate calls for entries. Moreover, companies have begun to invite user input through design competitions; new product launch blogs; internal company wikis; Second Life virtual meetings using avatars; GUNGEN creative collaboration used in Japan (Shigenobu, 2007), and the KJ brainstorming method popularized also by Japan (Kunifuji, 2007). All these techniques acknowledge their consumers’ role of becoming prosumers. Prosumers are well-informed consumers who proactively choose what they want or need instead of what is advertised to them. (Tapscott & Williams, 2006) Numerous studies have also proven that new electronic meeting techniques can improve productivity. (Aiken, 2007) One particular study done by Milam Aiken, Hugh Sloan, Joseph Paolillo (University of Mississippi), and Luvai Motiwalla (University of Hartford), compared two electronic meeting techniques and found that users preferred electronic gallery writing over individual pool writing “because of the former’s ability to show all the group’s comments at the same time.” (Aiken, 2007) In this research, brainstorming takes a dramatic turn from talking heads to combine several different creative thinking strategies using the existing wiki communities on the Internet followed by internal individual and group activities. The result is a new methodology derived from design research practices that will be referred to as collaborative ideation. Collaborative ideation is a group of individuals putting their heads together to generate ideas by bouncing them off one another. In group ideation, businesses typically begin by pinpointing their audience and the area of research associated with their target user group.

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2.3 Idea-generation: Innovate even with no money Idea-generation is often used interchangeably with ideation, which means coming up with ideas. Researchers have studied the effectiveness of individual and group ideageneration, and found that group work does not necessarily produce more ideas. “The task of idea generation in brainstorming groups has been extensively studied through controlled experiments (Diehl & Stroebe, 1987) and simulation studies (Nijstad & Stroebe, 2006). In the study of group brainstorming for idea generation, empirical work has repeatedly revealed evidence of process losses, in which a group with idea sharing may not always perform better than a collection of noninteracting individuals whose contributions are simply pooled afterwards (i.e., nominal groups), both in terms of the quantity and quality of unique ideas (Hill, 1982; Diehl & Stroebe).” (Wang & Rosé, 2007) However, further cognitive studies on computer-simulated memory models do suggest that group idea generation has the potential to generate more creative ideas than individuals alone. (Brown & Paulus, 2002) The exchange of ideas between more than one individual causes the stimulation that aids in creative idea generation. (Brown & Paulus, 2002) One Research and Development (R&D) team funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) was assigned to develop a terahertz imager. Before getting approved for the funding, they needed a persuasive strategy to find the right people for the job. (Clery, 2002) Lead by Peter de Maagt, they agreed to use a forced, intense teamwork—the mini Manhattan Project approach—made up of a mixed R&D team of eleven researchers…that

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won the go-ahead for their chip-sized terahertz imager proposal. (Clery, 2002) “But they are zealous converts to the agency’s novel multidisciplinary approach. ‘If you want to find something innovative that’s the best way,’ says Luisa Deias, an electronic engineer from Italy and the team’s sole female member. ‘This isn’t work,’ adds British materials scientist James O’Neill. ‘We’re just having fun.’” (Clery, 2002)

2.4 Co-creation: Applied in the pre-design phase Companies beginning to embark in co-creative programs involving users in their design processes are finding more success rates in providing products and services more catered to their target audience. (Customer-Made, 2006) However, users are still only accessed in a homogenous manner. (Hippell, 2005) Ideas are still restricted by the parameters of the type of product and service to create and not allowed to be freely expored across different platforms to co-create with the public.

2.5 Social-networking and crowdsourcing This new collaborative ideation method begins with early immersion within communities of users that have specific knowledge and experience with their subject matter – known as subject matter experts. Luckily with access to the Internet, people around the world are bridged by a relatively inexpensive way to communicate and access data. A new, emerging community for information sharing between stakeholders and subject matter experts has surfaced in the form of wikis online. (Tapscott & Williams, 2006) Wikis are made and used for people to share knowledge in a collaborative engine – adding new information by editing content directly on the web. “The Web is becoming a place for the collaborative construction of information on an incredible scale, and the wiki is at the center of this transformation. Almost anyone you meet has heard of Wikipedia, and people are increasingly seeing how the wiki combines

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simplicity and power in a radically different paradigm shifting way. In fact, I might venture to say that the wiki is the most significant development on the Internet since the web browser. Where the web browser enabled people to access online information in a radically different and better way that sparked widespread growth of the Internet, the wiki enables people to directly and easily edit information in a way that encourages increasing participation and exponentially faster growth of online information.” (Mader, 2008) People who dedicate their time in these online communities either want to expand their knowledge or find people who share the same fascination and insights as they do, which their daily dialogue does not provide. (Ellsworth, 2006) Design teams do not currently practice collaborative ideation integrating these user-inputs from wikis during the pre-design phase. By using wikis to gather ideas from users, design teams may be able to generate more user-centered designs earlier during their collaborative ideation sessions.

2.6 Free association: Using semantic knowledge “In normal thinking there needs to be a reason for saying something before it is said. Otherwise the result is nonsense,” Edward De Bono explains, “With provocation, there may not be a reason for saying something until after it is said.” (De Bono, 2008) This methodology focuses on creating a provocation with the wiki immersion and individual activity, which then supplies the words and images used as a stimulus for further associations and ideas used in the collage. Inspired by Edward De Bono’s Random Word exercises, this methodology uses the “patterning system” De Bono developed that is best described in his anecdote: “Imagine you live in a smallish town. Whenever you leave home, you always take the main street to get to your destination. One day, on the outskirts of the town, your car breaks down or you have an accident. For some

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reason you have to walk home. You ask around for directions. You find yourself arriving home by a street you would never have taken on leaving home. If you start from the periphery, you can open up paths you would never open up from the center. The Random Word drops you at the periphery. As you think your way back to the focus, you open up new ideas.” (De Bono, 2008) In using this “patterning system” process, one logically uses the Random Word for stimulation, which is in this case the words or images derived from the individual activity describing something that is a “no-brainer” and “enjoyable.” These themes become the main frame of reference for the new ideas stimulated. However, to use this method properly, “You should not just look for some sort of connection between the Random Word and the focus. this does not have any stimulating effect at all. The task is not to connect the two, but to use the Random Word for stimulation.” (De Bono, 2008) For instance, the word that came to mind for a “no-brainer task” for participant 4 in WS 1 was “shoe-laces.” To use this method properly, the letters in the word “shoe-laces” should not be rearranged or used as an acronym. Simply take the word as it is. Nor should you use the word in a series of steps to arrive at a new word, for example: “Ship suggests sea; sea suggests navigation; navigation suggests stars–so let’s use the word ‘stars.’” (De Bono, 2008) It is best to use the word “shoe-laces” as a concept or a value rather than simple associations. (De Bono, 2008) Another point to consider is to look out for possibilities, values, and new directions. “Once a possibility has emerged, pursue that possibility.” (De Bono, 2008) Lastly, it is best to stick to the word selected as a group whether it initially has any connection to the focus or not. In this study, the focus for the collage was “an intelligent machine or tool will look and feel like this.” This patterning system is a

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“lateral thinking” method used alone in a group of workshops that has generated 21,000 ideas in an afternoon for a steel company. (De Bono, 2008) De Bono’s “patterning system” process proves effective as both an individual and group brainstorming tool, but generating ideas in a group is superior to individual brainstorming. “Although sufficient literature supports individual over group brainstorming, cognitive researchers have found that group brainstorming is more effective in generating creative ideas.” (Brown, 2002) In this methodology, the main focus is generating ideas. Therefore, for this exploration De Bono’s “lateral thinking” technique is credibly effective. Other technologies have found, “Computer simulations of an associative memory model of idea generation in groups suggest that groups have the potential to generate ideas that individuals brainstorming alone are less likely to generate. Exchanging ideas by means of writing or computers, alternating from solitary to group brainstorming, and using heterogeneous groups appear to be useful approaches for enhancing group brainstorming.” (Brown, 2002) This methodology also explores exchanging ideas via writing or computers through the wiki immersion, and alternating from individual to group idea generation with the individual activity and group collage; however does not include explorations in “heterogeneous groups” to enhance group brainstorming.

2.7 Field research simulation: Scavenger hunt “Field Research is a general term that can be used to describe many different kinds of research activity that serves to bring the designer (or design team members) into direct contact with the customer.” (Arnold, 2005) Often times conducting field research reduces the risks of failure and increases the rate of success toward developing a new product, or justify the millions of dollars used to proceed with its development (Arnold, 2005). Field research is one method to capture data on the “voice of the customer,” as do ethnography,

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anthropological research, contextual inquiries, customer interviews, focus groups, and company visits. (Ulwick, 2005) Identifying three distinct types of “jobs” that a target audience performs will help design teams successfully acquire the correct type of data during their field research data collection to optimize the effectiveness of their product or service. “They must know which jobs their customers are trying to get done; the outcomes customers are trying to achieve; and the constraints that may prevent customers from adopting or using a new product or service. These three data sources represent the primary means by which companies can create new and significant customer value: by helping customers perform ancillary jobs, new jobs, or more jobs; by improving customer’s chances of getting a specific job done to satisfaction; and by removing obstacles that prevent customers from doing a job at all.” (Ulwick, 2005) In the case of this methodology, field research is a conceptual simulation in the form of a “scavenger hunt.” The participant is the “customer.” The field research simulation is also referred to here as the “scavenger hunt” for its resemblance to the game. In a scavenger hunt, a list of items are given to each individual or group to disperse and find within a limited time frame. The first to return with all the items found usually wins the game. The scavenger hunt is analgous to collecting data in field research. However, some companies who do not know how to “produce actionable field research outcomes” in a cost-effective way may be more overwhelmed and frustrated paying for the cost of research. (Arnold, 2005) As field research has been used for many years, its benefits include greater empathy from the designer’s perspective, increased creativity, and

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increased success in the market place. (Arnold, 2005)

2.8 Storytelling Although most storytelling approaches are documented in education, more investigation in industry practices reveal that it’s a common technique used to connect experiences and imagination in problem solving. “Story-telling combines semantic knowledge and episodic knowledge by explicit problem solving strategies.” (Klamma, Spaniol, & Renzel, 2006) The Journal of Universal Knowledge Management documents how marketers are taking advantage of computer software to share non-linear stories that discuss entrepreneurial collaboration and consumption using sophisticated multimedia host engines. (Klamma, Spaniol, & Renzel, 2006) “Stories are created from imagination, personal experiences, and an intertwining of words. Vocabulary building, improved listening skills, community building, development of syntactic complexity, and improved sequencing abilities are all advantages of storytelling (Blake and Bartel 1999; Groce 2004; Hilder 2005; Koenig and Zorn 2002; Myers 2001).” (Harris, 2007) When people share their narratives, they feel a sense of validation and discover how to connect content material with personal knowledge. Active listeners benefit from storytelling, too, because “stories require listeners to suspend their disbelief.” (Ohler 2006) Listening is as much an art as telling. Listeners listen to connect and see their own reflection in the story. Susan Butterworth and Ana Maria LoCicero (2001) suggest asking listeners to make comments on the story to encourage ideas, reflect thinking, and enhance meaning and importance of the story.” (Harris, 2007) By using these concepts, this methodology uses storytelling to consolidate and make sense of all the qualitative information gathered in the group activity.

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2.9 Generative tools research: Inspirations for materials “Recent directions in design require designers to become more and more aware of the user’s experience, emotion, the situation of product use, and social and cultural influences.” (Sanders, 2003) The pioneered techniques in generative tools at a local design research firm in Columbus, OH gave respondents ‘toolkits’ to make their own designerly tools to describe future experiences in living. (Sanders, 2003) From these established participatory research tools, this research attempts to combine the abstractions of the ‘toolkit’ concept with a few additional objects that activate the olfactory senses, such as spices and fish feed. The inspiration for adding scents into the toolkit is from the International Flavors and Fragrances’ (IFF) emotional profile of the fragrances. IFF developed “a proprietary, global database that identifies the emotional responses people have to almost 5,000 scent ingredients and fragrances. This rich palette of sensory associations and emotions can be drawn upon to inspire designers and consumer.” (Gobé, 2007)

2.10 Application to the design process: Intended case and conditions The main focus of this methodology is on ideation. The initial immersion activity focuses on familiarizing design teams with subject matter experts through wiki communities. An ideal wiki experience is typically gradual and ongoing, however recruiting online subject matter experts to generate ideas to cocreate with design teams is best limited to a very specific window of time for participation. The individual activity portion of this methodology stresses the design team’s emotional and experiential perspective on “ease of use” and “doing something enjoyable.” The free association is the technique used in the individual activity. It attempts to uncover the latent wants and needs of experiences that combine attributes of “ease of use” and “doing something enjoyable” together in one frame of reference. The field research simulation is designed to introduce

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the concept of making metaphoric connections between words and objects. That is a strong form of visualization helpful in externalizing ideas. Finally, the group activity and storytelling round out the methodology with brainstorming and stretching the imagination to make new associations with the objects in a collage. The overarching purpose of this methodology in the pre-design phase is to provide an alternative form of a cognitive retreat that is both affordable and effective to stir the creative juices.

2.11 Operational definitions Operational definitions qualify the terms used throughout this discussion.

Collaboration The process or act of working with individuals to produce an outcome, product, or service. Collaboration occurs in the context of completing a particular task. (Brown, et al., 2007)

Free Association A technique in psychology derived by Sigmund Freud. It describes the concept of relating the first thing that comes to mind with another unrelated thing. (Nelson, McEvoy, & Dennis, 2000)

Ideation The activity of generating ideas. This term is often used by industrial designers to describe equivalent activities such as brainstorming and free thinking.

Subject matter expert (SME) A person with a specific set of knowledge related to a project or discipline. (Brown, et al.,

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2007)

Co-creation “A very broad term referring to any act of collective creativity, i.e., creativity that is shared by two or more people. Applications range from the physical to the metaphysical and from the material to the spiritual, as can be seen by the output of search engines.” (Sanders & Stappers, 2008)

Co-design “Collective creativity applied across the whole span of a design process as a specific instance of co-creation. Co-design refers, for some people, to the collective creativity of collaborating designers. In a broader sense, co-design referred here is the creativity of designers and people not trained in design working together in the design development process.” (Sanders & Stappers, 2008)

Wiki A collaboratively authored knowledge resource that is accessed and edited from a web browser using wiki software, often referred to as ‘a collaboratively authored website.’ (Klobas, 2006)

Crowd-sourcing Crowdsourcing is when people gather via the Internet to create something and share in the profit, often without ever meeting each other in person. (Cambrian House, 2008)

Associative thinking The ability to classify or draw relationships between contingent objects or external

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signals (cues) to one another. (Shanks, 1995)

Groupthink The tendency of people who interact with each other frequently or who work closely with each other to begin thinking alike rather than finding innovative solutions to problems. (Brown, et al., 2007)

Company culture A company’s shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices. (Merriam-Webster)

Interaction A reciprocated reaction between two or more human beings, or to a lesser degree, between a human and an artificial entity capable of responding in some manner–such as a computer or system. (Saffer, 2007)

Storytelling The allegorical connection between objects in proximity to one another in an improvisational and imaginative manner.

Semantic knowledge Long established knowledge about objects, facts, and word meanings. (Squire, 2004)

MadLibbing Used as a verb to describe the act of creating an allegory by substituting words or images found on a collage as the basis for the Storyteller’s content. Mad Libs were books invented in the 1950s by Leonard Stern and Roger Price, who published the first editions

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themselves. The words “mad libs” is a play on the word “ad lib,” from the Latin “ad libitum” meaning “as you wish.” (FreeDictionary.com) Originally, it is a word game where one player prompts another for a list of words to substitute for blanks in a short story; these word substitutions results in a story that is then read aloud.

Moderator Or Facilitator. A person who keeps meetings and discussions on task, and who guides the discussions to elicit relevant information. (Brown, et al., 2007)

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CHAPTER 3

METHODOLOGY

3.1 Introduction: Process This methodology is conducted in the form of a workshop and divided into six parts as seen in Figure 2. It begins with an immersion phase where online subject matter experts from wiki communities interact with the design team (Figure 3). This is followed by the one-hour, four-part workshop. Part one is the group discussions on wikis; part two is the individual activity; part three is the field research simulation; and part four is the group activity and storytelling. Parts two and four utilize generative tools to aid individual and group expression. In part three, participants are asked to leave the room to find an object to represent what they wrote down in their second description paper elaborating on the idea of “something enjoyable.” This is in the form of a scavenger hunt, which briefly simulates field research. Part four challenges the imaginations of the participants. Combining descriptions from the wiki discussion and individual activity, part four asks the design team to work as a group to use associative cues to string otherwise unrelated things together on a large piece of paper for storytelling. Professional design teams will be compared to each other in how they generated ideas worked together as a team using the generative tools provided. The design team members will all follow the same instructions and guided questions on how to access and interact with three existing wiki communities. Then using the dialogues they have gathered from

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workshop process
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these communities, the participants will formulate visualizations of how the people in these communities describe their everyday progress, dilemmas, and resolutions regarding their subject matter. These visualizations will be shared when the participants come together in the workshop. The design team will then take the wiki commentaries and create a list of descriptive words that begin to categorize the comments, and note immediate questions that come to mind based on their initial reactions after reading each of them. These descriptive words will be used later, in the group activity, as added content under their new context. (Figure 4) Approximately twenty seconds is allowed between each prompt of the individual activity. Participants are asked to quickly move through the first two descriptions by writing down the first thing that comes to mind when prompted by the moderator. Participants are given blank pieces of paper to do this kind of immediate, free association exercise. (Figure 5) The free associations exercise from the individual activity is then represented as symbolic objects in the field research simulation, or scavenger hunt. The participants

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begin by leaving the room to scavenge for objects that represents what they described as “enjoyable” or “pleasurable” in their description two. (Figure 6) For the group activity, the participants work together as one large group to finish the sentence, “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” To represent their concept, the group is asked to construct a collage with the generative tools and anything in the room that strikes their imagination. In the middle of this group effort, the moderator asks
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the group to include the wiki comments into their collage. Then they are asked to add to any of the descriptions from their individual activity that may be relevant to their collage. (Figure 7) When some progress has been made on the collage, the group is asked to select two storytellers to represent them; one person will tell an allegory using the items used in the collage, and the other will explain the rationale behind the materials selected and how they completed the original sentence, “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” All the workshops used video and audio documentation. The moderator kept observational notes after the sessions. Post-questionnaires that were distributed at the end of each workshop were also collected. The video and audio data were transcribed and further analyzed by the moderator. Observational notes were analyzed in order to evaluate participants’ behaviors and usage of materials across the five workshops. Analysis of post-questionnaire feedback was used to make incremental changes for each successive workshop. (Figure 8)

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3.2 Timeline of workshop events The workshop was estimated to take sixty minutes. The earliest version of the workshop timeline began with the immersion activity recap for the first ten minutes. Then the individual activity and field research simulation took the next fifteen minutes followed by the storytelling for another ten minutes. Finally, ten more minutes was allotted for group discussion, which leaves the last twelve to fifteen minutes for filling out the post-questionnaires (Figure 9).
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3.3 Workshop approach: Modifying based on precedence Each successive workshop followed an experiential-feedback strategy that built on top of modifications determined by the moderator’s experience from the previous workshop.

3.4 User definition The target user for the purpose of this research was the above average Internet user–someone familiar with the Internet (or World Wide Web), who actively uses some form of social networking web site or software such as Facebook, MySpace, Skype, wikis, or instant messaging. This user was also required to be familiar with working in a design team atmosphere or arrangement where varied individuals come together to discuss project strategies and ideas for new client projects that involve producing a product, service, or brand to meet user wants and needs. In terms of demographics, the participants are adults, 18 years or older, male or female, working in the local area of Columbus, OH, and having worked together at one point of time before meeting for the research workshop. Cultural, social, and economic backgrounds were not considered for this research.

3.5 Recruitment sampling: Criteria and script Recruitment sampling was based on first come, first served availability within a company having an active in-house (or internal) design team. Potential companies were then selected based on willingness to participate, the varied focuses of their work compared to previously selected groups, and familiarity with design team brainstorming sessions. Potential subjects were screened with a recruitment script based on the above criteria (i.e., user definition) and selected companies were chosen based on the above criteria (Figure 10).

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3.6 Finding contact persons: Who they were Contact persons were obtained through the professional network of the Design Department of The Ohio State University and alumni. Once a connection was made, the contact person gathered six to eight coworkers that fit the user definition for this research.

3.7 Pilot Study The process of the pilot study followed the general description of the methodology, which became the direction for future improvements for the professional workshops thereafter. Six graduate design students who met the target user definition were selected to participate. The pilot session included basic generative tools that included paper, Post-Its, printed images, and markers.

3.8 Immersion for participants: Activity to stir questions and discussions The immersion activity was emailed to the contact person two weeks prior to the arranged workshop date. Willing participants visited three wiki websites and followed the guided exploration, or “Discussion Guide,” as shown in Figure 11. They were to note any questions or comments that arose from their forum experiences. Those notes were then shared at the beginning of the ideation workshop.

3.9 Pre-workshop checklist: For moderator Before heading out the door, the moderator relied on the checklist to ensure all equipment and redundant technologies were present (See Appendix, A.5 “Moderator’s pre-workshop checklist”). The checklist also became handy after the workshop ended when (often times) the packing was rushed due to simultaneous conversations that would easily cause the moderator to leave out equipment or tools scattered around the walls and tables of the room. Usually after the workshops were finished, extra materials were

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Figure 11: The discussion guide used during the wiki immersion activity

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collected from the participants, such as their group collages. The pre-workshop checklist also kept track of unimportant materials or tools that could be discarded or recycled after the workshop was over.

3.10 Moderator Script: Timing and improvisation The moderator played the role of a timekeeper to maintain the deliberate pace of the workshop. The moderator script had the estimated duration of each activity with the prompts that instructed the participants as to what to do during the workshop. Within the one hour session, room for longer discussions were available during the wiki discussion in the beginning and the group activity section when the participants constructed their collages (Figure 12). The reason for the varied time intervals depended on the participants’ immersion activity discussion and input. If the participants had more insights, questions, or feedback to share about the wiki immersion they were to do prior to the workshop, then more time might be needed. When they had less to say or discuss, then the pace of the workshop was maintained by segueing to the next activity. The group activity was the second point for a varied time interval as the moderator would observe the chemistry between each of the workshop participants to guage how much time they needed to complete their collage.

3.11 Workshop site selection Because the research was based on companies with internal design teams and a collaborative environment, the workshop site selection also aimed to enhance that aspect of their company culture by having the workshop on-site (located where the subjects work). The workshop room allocation was determined based on company location and meeting room typically used or available for a group to move and talk freely in one space. To support a collaborative atmosphere, the on-site workshop environment was

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Figure 12: Moderator’s Script and Timing 35

decidedly an open space. That space possessed the following qualities: Allowed for noise; room for six to eight people to walk around in; pinning large paper on the walls; plugging video equipment; sitting or standing around one large table; and turning off all phone interruptions during the session. Participating companies provided and determined the meeting space. They also matched the above criteria depending on availability and where they were typically comfortable holding discussions.

3.12 Workshop equipment and materials Workshop equipment were video and audio capturing devices used during each on-site visit, and workshop materials referred to the props provided for the subjects to use during their individual and group activities in the session. The video and audio equipment included a digital camcorder, tripod, battery pack, audio recorder, and extra AAA batteries. Workshop materials were transported in labeled containers and then arranged into three separate trays anchoring a large piece of paper used for the group activity (Figure 13). A list of materials include office supplies, markers, CrayolaTM marker paper, spices, animal feed, aquarium décor, printed AveryTM labels, labeled drawing paper, finger paint and paper, workshop signage, four discussion topic banners, printed questionnaires, bound pamphlets with gift card insertions, one large piece of butcher paper, push pins, and water. (Figures 14-16)

3.13 Workshop site, equipment, and materials set-up The moderator needed to leave an hour prior to the workshop to set up. The workshop site also needed an open wall space or whiteboard, preferably one large table, and chairs.In order to transport all the materials and equipment, smaller items were stored in separate plastic containers that may be stackable into one small luggage bag. The

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Figure 13: Materials-Images left to right: Individual Activity, Group Activity

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Figure 14: Materials-Tray set up

Figure 15: Materials-Wiki set up

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Figure 16: Materials-Room set up

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large poster paper for the group activity was rolled into a tube for weather-protection. For the workshop set-up, materials that were more colorful were mixed with duller ones to neutralize the three trays they were placed in. The three trays were arranged in a triangular formation around the marker set in the center that anchored the large poster paper. The wiki examples were hung on the open wall opposite side of the camera and near the fill-in-the-blank sentence for the group activity.

3.14 Individual activity: Timing and Associative cues The individual activity had a basis in immediate, free association. Each seating arrangement had three blank pieces of paper, a three-page set of small AveryTM labels with varied, color images printed on them, and located near an array of sticky note pads. For the first individual activity, the moderator gave a prompt to three scenarios where the participants were asked to write down the first thing that came to mind. They were directed to elaborate as much as they could by writing down words with their markers, or adhering any of the printed images provided. The first scenario asked the participants to think of something that was essentially second nature, no-brainer, a habit, or that’s automatic to them. The terms “second nature” and “no-brainer” were used specifically until participants asked for more clarity, which was when “habit” and “automatic” were used as synonyms. Participants were given a short time to write descriptive words of this “no-brainer” task and included visuals they sketched or found to represente in the provided images. The second scenario asked for the descriptive words of something that was “enjoyable,” or “gives great pleasure.” The first thing that immediately came to mind was noted on the second blank sheet of paper. Using the descriptions in that second scenario, the participants were asked to think of an object that symbolically represented what they described. Then using only five minutes, they were asked to step out of the room to bring

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that object and discuss the reasons for their choices. By allowing an approximate twenty seconds between each scenario, timing played an integral role in limiting participants from over-thinking their descriptions. Participants were asked to quickly move through the first two scenarios before they reached the next part of the exercise.

3.15 Field study simulation: Scavenger hunt The field study simulation asked participants to find a symbolic representation of their description in scenario two, which was “something enjoyable or pleasurable.” With only five minutes, participants left the room of the workshop to bring that object that symbolized their personal take on something enjoyable. After five minutes passed, everyone returned to the room to describe the symbolizm behind their scavenged objects. In describing objects in their own narrative, participants began to tap into more emotional attributes of the idea-generation process. In this case, the narratives were personal and story-like. Storytelling was the “telling of an event–something happens over time, in a setting, with characters who were caught up in the plot.” (Bystedt, Lynn, Potts, 2003) After discussing the wiki immersion experience in the beginning of the workshop, the traditional method of storytelling was, again, woven into the explanation of how the symbolic objects had been chosen during the scavenger hunt during the workshop. The storytelling created the experiential vocabulary necessary to carry over to the group activity that would use these descriptions and experiences of “something enjoyable” to construct a new allegory for a new context that described characteristics of an intelligent machine or tool.

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3.16 Group activity: Timing and moderator participation The group activity was a non-traditional storytelling method that combined the pairing of unrelated words, images, and objects into one context. As a group, the moderator asked that participants synthesize their understanding of “an intelligent machine or tool” in the context of “something that’s a no-brainer or second nature” from their individual activity. From that frame of reference, the participants were instructed to create one group collage using all the objects, generative tools, descriptions from their individual activity and wiki critiques to build the narrative that described the characteristics of this “intelligent machine or tool.” While the group worked on their collage, the moderator interrupted them twice at prescribed times–once after they’ve decided on the central context or theme of their collage, and a second time when they seemed to be nearing an end to their brainstorming– and asked participants to include their previous wiki commentaries and add at least two descriptions from scenario three into their montage. That reinforced the act of free association from an individual to a group level. The moderator would interject another time and asked the group to select two representatives to speak; one would be storytelling and the other would be explaining. The moderator’s neutral role as the observer was temporarily changed into a participant by leading the designated storyteller away from the group for instructions. The moderator instructed the storyteller to spontaneously create a plot for the objects on the collage as if (s)he was telling a story. Regardless of where the central theme was, the storyteller would read the collage from left to right beginning at the top left corner of the collage until (s)he made her/his way down to the bottom. The moderator reminded the storyteller that there were no wrong answers and to treat it like a game. After those instructions were given, the moderator explained to the storyteller the reason for waiting outside for two minutes together. Sufficient time was needed to allow the rest of the group inside the room to finish the collage. During the two-minute wait, the

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moderator and storyteller played a quick string game of Cat’s Cradle to buy some time.

3.17 Cat’s Cradle: Storyteller steps out Cat’s Cradle was introduced when the moderator escorted the storyteller outside the room for further instructions. After the first workshop, participants showed reluctance to be nominated to leave the room with the moderator for further instructions. Part of that anxiety might have been the result of not knowing the moderator well, or avoiding excessive attention. Therefore, the initial idea of playing a string game to kill time after the instructions were given to the storyteller was an attempt to reduce their performance anxiety. Cat’s Cradle was chosen for its inclusivity. Indigenous cultures all over the world from the Artic to the Equatorial zones also have this familiar string game. (FreeDictionary.com) “Cat’s cradle was probably one of humanity’s oldest games, and was spread among an astonishing variety of cultures, even ones as unrelated as Europeans and the Dyaks of Indonesia; Alfred Wallace who, while traveling in Borneo, thought of amusing the Dyak youths with a novel game with string, was in turn very surprised when they proved to be familiar with it, and showed him some figures and transitions that he hadn’t previously seen. In China Cat’s Cradle is called Catch Cradle. The anthropologist Louis Leakey has also described his use of this game to obtain the cooperation of Sub-Saharan African tribes otherwise unfamiliar with, and suspicious of, Europeans. In a 1858 Punch Cartoon it is referred to as “Scratch Cradle”, a name

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supported by Brewer’s 1898 Dictionary. Different cultures have different names for the game, and often different names for the individual figures. (For instance, the Russians call the whole game simply “the game of string” and... the cat isn’t ever mentioned, but the cradle was, though it’s the initial figure that was called so.) (FreeDictionary.com) Another reason Cat’s Cradle was selected was for its portability being one string in a loop. It was also the kind of game that was easy to learn even if one had never been exposed to it. The game was played with one string with its ends tied together to make one big loop. The string was woven onto both hands of the first player while the second player attempted to transfer the arrangement in a new pattern without tangling the web. Two players alternated turns in creating new patterns or webs with the string until someone reached the “cradle” in the end. After the two minutes were up, the moderator and storyteller returned to the room to wrap up with storytelling.

3.18 Group activity role play: Storyteller and explainer The storyteller and explainer were peer-selected among the participants towards the end of the group activity. The storyteller stepped out of the room with the moderator for two minutes to get further instructions on how the narrative would be derived from the group collage. The moderator asked the storyteller to string the collage elements in an improvised narrative by the order of appearance beginning from the top left corner of the rectangular piece of paper–reading from left to right–from the top to bottom of the collage. The

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storyteller’s challenge was essencially to develop an imaginative narrative that linked initially unrelated words, images, and objects together in a story that was seemingly nonsensical and yet powerfully jolting the imagination outside of its predictable boundaries. This was the non-traditional spin to the popular technique of the metaphoical collage. “Participants enjoyed creating collages because they could use the more visual, feeling part of their brains and found an entirely different way of looking at a problem.” (Michalko, 2001) This hands-on brainstorming technique of collaging with the non-traditional storytelling method was originally inspired by Mad Libs. Mad Libs was a play on the word “ad lib,” from the Latin “ad libitum” meaning “as you wish.” (FreeDictionary.com) It was a word game where one player prompted another for a list of words to substitute for blanks in a short story; those word substitutions resulted in a story that was then read aloud. Mad Libs was invented in the 1950s by Leonard Stern and Roger Price, who published the first editions themselves. Mad Libs books were still published by Price Stern Sloan, an imprint of Penguin Group. (FreeDictionary.com) The blank spaces filled by the participants were their descriptions used to finish the sentence, “My intelligent machine or tool will look and feel like this...” The story that resulted was not a prescribed one that was supplied. Instead, the story was one that resulted from the storyteller’s improvisation of how the collage elements would be spontaneously drawn together in a story. They were too occupied with the “right” answers or how unintelligent they were sounding. Instead, connecting the objects in an allegory using that free association technique allows the imagination to push its boundaries to “find what you’re not looking for,” and “looking into other worlds,” as Michalko described as two essential strategies for creative thinking. (Michalko, 2001) What the storyteller and explainer do with the same collage is to contrast the interpretation of the same objects in a completely different way given a different problem to tackle. The difference in their tasks is that the storyteller

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was given instructions to tell an improvised story linking all the objects on the montage, while the explainer was directed to explain the original rationale behind the choices for the objects and how they finish the sentence, “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” In a real world situation, this strategy is otherwise known as reframing the problem statement. In an example from Michalko’s Cracking Creativity, he describes a “Parallel World” guideline for small groups that can be used to show clients the bottom-line benefits of investing in training and personnel development in their R&D department: “1. Ask the group to rephrase the problem as a wish. Example: We wish we could get clients to visualize themselves using the new products and skills that would come out of training in this department.

2. Have the group single out key words in the wish. Example: “New products” and “skill.”

3. Present the group with the list of ten or so parallel worlds and ask the group to choose two worlds unrelated to the problem. Example: “Mining” and “weather.” 4. Have the group apply the key words to these worlds to help generate seemingly irrelevant images and associations.

Example: Have the group brainstorm new products and skills in mining and weather. Some possible mining

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subjects might be “focus-blasting,” “new technology to restore the environment,” “lights on hats,” and so on.” (Michalko, 2001) At a more complex scale, elaborate materials, abrupt time-frame, and no designated product, service, or experience to create for the workshop, the “blind” associations to warm up the creative mind demonstrated in these workshops begin to tap into the problem solving techniques of great think-tank strategies, NATO intelligence approaches, and military training methods. (Michalko, 2001) During this time, the designated Explainer was also responsible for learning the rationale behind the objects the group chose that completed the sentence, “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” The explainer closed the group activity with a traditional storytelling method that explained the original ideas for the elements on the collage. In this manner, the collaging aided new connections to seemingly unrelated material. Consider the thinking process used behind making collages. What made collaging effective was its metaphoric and analogical framework that allowed participants to assign different associations to the words, pictures, and objects used in it. The collaging process could bridge ideas from different contexts by placing them on the same visual plane of the collage: “The R&D staff for a furniture company looked for ways to develop a paint that does not fade, chip, or scratch. They made a collage that included pictures of various trees and plants. The collage triggered a discussion of how trees and plants get their color. their subsequent research inspired the idea of ‘everlasting’ color. They created the idea of injecting trees with the dye additives that would impregnate the plant cells

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with color, spreading it throughout the tree. The tree is planted before it is cut down.” (Michalko, 2001) “A metaphoric picture,” Michalko asserts, “allowed you to activate your right brain and gave you a view of the problem that might otherwise remained invisible.” (Michalko, 2001) The added storytelling further engaged the imagination in expressing a fictional experience that linked each element on the collage in a dynamic plot. After the storyteller returns to tell the allegory, the explainer follows by clarifying the original intentions behind each of the elements added to the collage, which attempts to complete the sentence “My intelligent machine or tool will look and feel like this...”

3.19 Questionnaires These questionnaires are administrated at the end of the session to gather reactions from the participants. The first portion asks for background information. The blank spaces after the questions encourage personal expression in their responses. (Figure 17) The moderator also takes this time to clarify the first question asking, “What kind of design experience do you have,” with the option to respond in years or by description. This becomes relevant when the design team is not limited to designers. The exploration welcomes the possibility of companies who practice cross-pollenation, or mingling professionals from different fields, into their ideation activities. The second portion of the questionnaire is a list of statements rating participants’ overall experiences. On a horizontal scale of five dots, a “thumbs down” icon on one end represents “strongly disagree” and the “thumbs up” icon on the opposite end represents “strongly agree.” The five dots in a row represent a typical rating scale from 1 to 5 (with 1: strongly disagree; 5: strongly agree). The feedback aided the moderator to make more informed judgments on incremental changes for successive workshops that followed.

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3.20 Pamphlet and gift cards The pamphlets served as a souvenir and appreciation for participating in the unconventional ideation workshop. (Figure 19) The moderator’s contact information was available on the last page with the coffee gift card. These were distributed when participants received the questionnaire at the end of the workshop.

3.21 Post-Workshop moderator tasks While the questionnaires were filled out, the moderator turned off recording equipment and packed them away. Pamphlets with gift cards followed shortly with closing remarks. Before the participants left the room, the moderator thanked them with a handshake for a positive closure to the workshop.

Figure 18: Pamphlet gift card

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3.22 Sorting data: video, audio, questionnaires, and notes Video and audio data is transcribed by the researcher and used for further comparisons across all the workshops. The moderator’s observational notes for each workshop are listed and grouped into categories. Each of the observations are then compared under specific categories on workshop atmospheres, participant behaviors, company cultures, different procedures, and changes in approaches. The collages are analyzed by counting co-occurring images and words. (Sanders, 2003) In the end, the questionnaire responses were tallied and averaged for an overall view of what the participants thought about the workshop.

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CHAPTER 4

RESULTS

4.1 Introduction: What to expect The following sections detail how the workshop series unfolded and the procedures of setting up data collection. Each section intends to be read in sequence–mimicking the style of a cognitive walk-through. However individual sections of this chapter are arranged in parallel with the chapter on Methodology so as to accelerate content comparisons between the two chapters.

4.2 Timelines of workshop events: How it unfolded The workshop was estimated to take sixty minutes. People in two of the five workshops displayed more enthusiasm working with the discussion topic and materials than people in the other three, which was shown by the increase of thirty minutes in the overall time spent for their ideation workshops. Throughout the progression of the workshops, the timeline has evolved with slight differences in when to have scenario three and the explanation of the wiki. By the fifth workshop, the timeline of the workshop events took the following sequence: the moderator’s self introduction was the first three minutes, followed by the immersion recap for five minutes; then came the wiki explanation for two minutes; the individual activity needed eighteen minutes instead of the original fifteen minutes; an extra two minutes

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to familiarize participants with the generative tools before allotting ten minutes to the group activity; and finally a reduced storytelling section to five minutes instead of ten with the remaining ten minutes for questionnaires, instead of the original fifteen minutes. (Figure 19)

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Figure 19: Workshop process: Revised durations

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4.3 Workshop approach: What was modified Because each preceeding workshop gave insight for the moderator to modify the way information was introduced or displayed to the participants in the next workshop, the pilot study influenced the initial changes to the moderator script. (Figure 20) The wiki discussion was reordered to occur at the beginning, and the generative tools were introduced in addition to the original set of materials provided. (Figures 21-23) The pilot study also inspired the reduced scale of the overall materials into abstract pieces. However, the group images that were originally one uniform size were printed at an enlarged scale for more visibility on the collage paper in subsequent workshops. On the same note, after the first workshop the generative tools were placed in trays instead of scatterd on the table. The Storyteller also began to step out of the room with the moderator for instructions instead of hearing it announced during the group activity. By the end of the first workshop, the moderator noticed the name tags were awkward on the participants. They gathered together on the premise that they have worked together, and the moderator had no trouble remembering the names of less than eight participants each time, so the name tags were no longer used after the first workshop. The second workshop was first to introduce the game of Cat’s Cradle. It was played when the moderator stepped outside with the Storyteller and explained further instructions on how to construct a narrative out of the group collage. After the second workshop, the three wiki comments that originally debuted during the group activity was instead integrated with the wiki discussion at the beginning. Uniquely, pizza was ordered by the participating company as a treat during the lunch hour that the ideation session was held. The participants in the third workshop behaved the most enthusiastically when they handled the generative tools. They immediately gravitated towards the materials on the table, which then introduced a longer session of materials exploration than previously

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workshop timeline

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Figure 20: Workshop duration and changes

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Figure 21: Materials Tray 1

Figure 22: Materials Tray 2

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Figure 23: Materials tray 3

intended. This materials exploration took place at the beginning when participants arrived at the workshop. Also for the first time, it was at WS 3 that the three wiki comments were analyzed interactively with Post-it notes instead of orally without aids. (Figures 24) The fourth workshop changed gears when they rescheduled the first meeting date and replaced it with a tour of the company instead. The tour made it possible to learn whether or not the company culture would foster out-of-box thinking or a fast-pace ideation workshop. The opportunity to visit the company before dropping in to conduct the ideation workshop gave the moderator an idea of how well the participants would possibly receive the methodology. The atmosphere and style of the company internally informs the moderator of how comfortable they might be with making a lot of noise or sharing ideas with unconventional generative tools. The separate company visit also helped the moderator build a stronger relationship with the contact person and

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the colleagues to be recruited. The previous workshops, WS 2 and 3, did not require pre-set tours because a concurrent design seminar course exposed the moderator to those companies in a class field trip. Another difference in the fourth workshop was the first time a participant demanded all instructions for the group activity to be dictated in the beginning instead of at the moderator’s scripted pace. The participant expressed discomfort in getting up out of his seat more than twice to pick up materials located on the other tables. In preparing for the fifth workshop, participants requested a meeting a week prior to the workshop to introduce the immersion activity and to provide an opportunity to meet

Figure 24: WS 3 participants exploring materials

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the moderator. This additional meeting suggested a high level of interest, which prompted the guided wiki exploration to be formatted not only as an email, but a worksheet designed for participants to follow during the discussion at the workshop. As a result, this workshop started out with a more involved and enthusiastic discussion on the wiki immersion activity compared to the previous groups. What was strikingly different about the people in the WS 5 was their dynamics. (Figure 25) Although other groups showed their own distinctive teamwork capabilities, WS 5 had an impeccable understanding of each other’s strengths and how to optimize them in a group setting. “Why don’t you draw something [participant 2], you’re the best at that,” participant 3 said. The participants displayed a strong mutual understanding that was reflected in the way they built the Stonehenge-esque rock structure around the central topic of the collage.

Figure 25: WS 5 people during the group collaging activity 59

4.4 Recruitment samples: Who participated? Of the thirty-one participants, twenty were designers, one was an engineer, one was a marketer, four had mixed professional backgrounds (business/technology/music/ education), and three were design interns. (Figure 26) Based on the contacts that responded to the recruitment letters, four design firms and one in-house design group at an insurance company were on board to try the ideation method. Five other companies either did not respond, had scheduling conflicts, or trouble finding willing participants. All the successful connections were made in person as opposed to cold calls or email solicitations.

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Figure 26: Contacts & participants

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4.5 Finding the contact persons: Who they were Most of the contact persons were alumni of The Ohio State University or affiliated with the professional network of the OSU design faculty. The contact person shouldered the burden of recruiting the particular individuals that met the user definition. The participants all worked directly or on a semi-frequent basis with the contact person.

4.6 Pilot Study The pilot study participants were graduate design students with varied background experience that ranged from engineering to animation. According to the questionnaire results, most of them were confused and unaccustomed to the fast-pace orientation of the workshop, but five of six found themselves curiously inspired. However, they lacked the provided imagery and supplies that later workshops reeped, such as tape and adhesive pictures, which resulted in novel ways to use what was available. During the group activity, participants wanted to hang up their work and needed tape. When they realized they had to improvise, one participant quickly lit up, as if a light bulb went off over her head, and took a few adhesive image labels to tape up the group collage and ideas on the paper. The table set-up was bolted to the ground, therefore impervious to rearrange. The unfortunate “O” formation of end-to-end tables left little space in the surrounding area to move freely during the group activity. The pilot study also had a guest faculty spectator. “The atmosphere was tenser with a spectator,” the participants commented afterwards; so workshops that followed had no spectators invited by the moderator.

4.7 Immersion for participants: Questions and answers What started as an intensive wiki website exploration transformed into a simple question planting exercise to get the designers exposed to the wiki “farm” (or community). After the first workshop, participants expressed that the wiki activity was

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too complicated and confusing. In an attempt to reduce the complexity of the original nine questions analyzing the wiki websites, the discussion for the wiki immersion activity was modified to one observational task analysis and four planted questions. The directions became a more refined step by step walk-through with the participant signing into the wiki farms and familiarizing oneself to the websites as a whole. “For many people, the first exposure to a wiki was Wikipedia and at times that created misconceptions about what a wiki was and how it could be used. One common misconception was that it could only be used as an encyclopedia. There’s a major fear about privacy of information, or the perceived lack thereof in wikis…security and integrity of information was another big concern.” (Mader, 2008) A wiki website could maintain its integrity by tracking every change made on the website with the user’s name attached to their modifications. Also, a real-time log would be generated with a time stamp and the user’s name turned into a hyperlink for other users to exchange discussions, disputes, or feedback just by clicking on it. The logged information was usually in a tab labeled “history,” and found on secondary pages of the website accessible to the public to view. “Good practice on a wiki discourages simply deleting someone else’s work, and in practice people are much more likely to do just the opposite–they’ll add their own contribution and won’t even touch what someone else has written. This most often happens with new users who are afraid to change what someone else has written. The best thing one person can do is make contributions that build on the existing content.” (Mader, 2008) Breaking the initial apprehension toward wikis meant diving straight in and knowing there was a guided hand to hold. That was the approach of the wiki immersion activity modified into a guided walk-through. However, the moderator found the discussion for the wiki feedbacks were more an exercise of exposure rather than an act of information retrieval.

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4.8 Moderator script evolution: Reasons and responses The moderator script began with the anticipation that the workshops would last forty-five minutes, but in actuality they generally ran for the full hour if the discussions permitted. The main fluctuations in time were due to the wiki discussions. Otherwise, the moderator had the upper hand on how time was used and when the group moved along through each activity. After the first workshop, the script adjusted the time allocation for the wiki discussion to five minutes, and the explanation from twenty to two minutes. The individual activity was a total of seventeen and a half minutes, which includes the field research simulation, or scavenger hunt. An extra two minutes were given to participants to explore the generative tools after they returned from the scavenger hunt in preparation for the group activity. This allowed for more fluidity in communicating ideas when it came down to the storytellers who represented the group to demonstrate some kind of comprehension and clarity. In the end, both the storytelling and questionnaire sections were cut by five minutes and redistributed into the individual activity and the moderator’s three-minute self-introduction.

4.9

Workshop site selection

The site had to be the place where the design team would normally hold their brainstorming sessions. All but one workshop was held in the main meeting room closest to the participants’ workstations. The exception was workshop four. The creative session was held at their open café and lounge area where some clients would meet because the main meeting room was taken (See Figure 28, next page). In this case, the rescheduled meeting fell into conflict for booking the main meeting room, which turned out to be a happy accident. Workshop four was the calmest and most leisure of all the groups.

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4.10 Workshop equipment and materials: Documenting modifications The workshop materials were primarily modified based on how they would be compressed into smaller components to transport. The same video and audio equipment were used throughout the five workshops. After the first workshop, the materials were broken down into smaller, more abstract pieces, and carried in plastic cases arranged so that each case belonged to its own tray for the workshop. Hermit crab sand and aquarium pebbles were added to the original medley of generative tools. These textures were arranged in small, clear, plastic jewelry sacks next to finer, grain-like textures that had “sniff me,” or “feel me” written on the back of them. Not until workshop three did the wiki discussion move to the beginning of the

Figure 27: WS 4 café and lounge area

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workshop. After the wiki discussion followed the wiki introduction, the discussion was more coherent than when it was scheduled for the group activity. The participants seemed more receptive when activities were clearly divided into similar chunks. Transitions for the moderator were smoother after the wiki discussion was moved to the beginning.

4.11 Workshop site, equipment, and materials set-up: Variations The workshop site, equipment, and materials set-up took on minor variations according to the table configuration and room size that the contact person was able to arrange. Only workshop two and three had the ideal, large table to work on. Workshops one and five had “O” shaped table arrangement that divided the group from one end to the other. Workshop four was the only group that had their materials set on two different types of tables–café and coffee tables. (Figure 27) In essence, the workshops with the central, large table did not have to keep track of materials as much as the other groups with materials spread out in the “O” shape or coffee tables (Figure 28). However, there were enough Post-it pads to have two sets on either end of the “O” configuration and walls to hang the wiki feedbacks to anchor where “front” was–as it helped cluster the group closer towards the front.

4.12

Individual activity: Documentation

The individual activity asked the participants to represent their thoughts on 5 x 8.5, blank sheets of paper. Their papers were collected at the end of the workshop. (Figure 29) With only twenty seconds allotted for this activity, most of the participants were able to represent two to three items on each piece of paper. All the workshop participants from WS 1-5 uniformly used lists and images to represent their ideas. There was no difference whether or not the participants were previously familiar to participatory approaches. This may be the result of the short time-frame given to complete the activity.

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Figure 29: WS 2 Individual activity-6 participant samples

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4.13

Field study simulation/Scavenger hunt: Object selections

The field study simulation or scavenger hunt stirred up the energy level in all the workshops. No one was too delayed in returning. Only workshop two participants worried about the objects being collected by the moderator. An extra announcement addressing this concern was made for the workshops that followed. The moderator originally asked for either one or two objects, but that became confusing for workshop two and four. To simplify matters, the moderator designated two objects thereonafter for their field research simulation scavenger hunt. When workshop five spent more time discussing the wiki immersion, the moderator improvised to conserve time, and asked the participants to scavenge for only one symbolic object to represent their “enjoyable” description.

4.14

Group activity: Collages

According to the questionnaire responses, the group activity was the most memorable event of the workshop for most of the participants. Another memorable aspect was the colorful generative tools that were provided. The third take away was the confusion from the unique approach of the activities themselves. The group activity asked the participants to not only finish the sentence, “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” but also to include at least two of their descriptive analyses of the wiki feedbacks. Participants were asked to grab the Post-it notes with their critique and transfer them to the collage directly. Then the moderator asked them to add their scenario three descriptions to the collage, which were words and images that described the combination of their “no-brainer task,” “something enjoyable,” and their scavenger hunt object that represented their “enjoyable” experience. Some unique approaches in material usage were uncovered during the group activity. Workshop one did not stay on the given sheet of paper, but assembled the materials like a game board that trailed off to either side of the collage. Workshop two combined

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the provided images to make new associations and even used an image only to cross it out describing what it is not. Workshop three used added props they brought in that expressed their playfulness. To emphasize their logic and systematic approach as a group, workshop four mapped their train of thought or connections like a context map or mind map to link the flow of interpretation of their objects. The fifth workshop notably built a Stonehenge contraption to highlight their central theme that showed visual hierarchy, and also extended their own drawings off of the images they used. All the groups showed creativity and structure in their problem solving strategy, however only workshop three and five fully utilized all the materials in their montages. (Figures 30-34)

attached different objects to symbolize one concept

built model outside of paper parameters

linked ideas with objects in proximity like tracks/path

Figure 30: Group activity collage-WS 1

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combined 2 images to make new image

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Figure 31: Group activity collage-WS 2

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Figure 32: Group activity collage-WS 3

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multi-dimensional symbolism on 1 object new way of using rubberband and paperclips

Figure 33: Group activity collage-WS 4

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Figure 34: Group activity collage–WS 5

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4.15 Cat’s Cradle: Timing and responses The Cat’s Cradle game was a game played with the storyteller after instructions on how to make an allegory with the group collage was explained. An extra two minutes was added to continue the string game until someone is left with the image of the “cradle.” The game was familiar to every storyteller who played with the moderator. Four out of five selected storytellers played Cat’s Cradle and of them three were males. All but one workshop, WS 1, played the string game. It was because the storyteller in WS 1 was anxious to return to the group and did not allow the group the extra two minutes to wrap up their collage that the Cat’s Cradle was used to occupy two minutes. Workshop four had the only female storyteller who played Cat’s Cradle with the moderator until the moderator deliberately ended it when time was up. All the other three storytellers played Cat’s Cradle until the “cradle” was reached and time was also up. Part of the reason for the light-hearted string game was to relax the storyteller and help him/her to focus on the new task of creating an allegory using the collage. With fresher eyes, the storyteller was presumed to take the new instructions–of linking the objects on the collage–into a new story with less pressure to “get it right.” The moderator reminded storytellers that their story would sound completely radical, but that was expected. However, storytellers were still showed apprehension in freely imagining a story from the objects on the collage. A possible reason for this might be a comment made by participant 1 at WS 4, “We’d probably feel more comfortable loosening up if we weren’t actually at work or in the middle of the day like this,” he mused. This methodology could be applied outdoors or even extending the field research portion longer if the time and budget allowed it. To honor to the original one hour cap placed on this exploration upon recruitment, ideas on changing the workshop site might be explored for future studies. (For more on future research directions, see Chapter 6 “Next Steps”)

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4.16 Group activity role play: Selection and responses The group activity role play was the selection of the storyteller and explainer. The moderator asked the group to select a storyteller to step out of the room for supplementary instructions, and another person, called the explainer, to stay with the group to work on the collage, but be prepared to explain the reasons for each object selected and how it finished the sentence, “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” Most groups selected the contact person as the storyteller who stepped out of the room with the moderator, while other groups picked the most imaginative person in the group, or the one who would be comfortable talking to the moderator one-on-one. The explainer was usually selected by personality–the one who was the most talkative, logical, or brave and was willing to orally organize the chaotic montage into a thoughtful narrative. Most people were more nervous about storytelling rather than explaining the objects, but the moderator encouraged the group to stay close to the collage as not to isolate the speaker all alone in front of the room and to jump in whenever either storyteller or explainer needed help (Figure 35).

Figure 35: Storytelling WS 3

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4.17 Analysis I: Questionnaires The questionnaire was distributed immediately after the workshop to document the design teams’ immediate responses to the workshop. The questionnaire asked for each participant’s background and assessment of the workshop. The first half of the questionnaire provided space for participants to write their responses out. The second half was a multiple-choice section that listed comments with on a scale of 1 to 5. It ranged from a 1, or strongly disagree, to a 5, or strongly agree. All the responses collected from WS 2-5 were documented on an excel spreadsheet (Tables 1-4). Most design teams enjoyed the workshop rating their experience 3 or higher on a scale of one to five–five being strongly agreeing. The strongly disagree mark went to “I understood everything I was doing,” and “I wanted the session to be shorter.” After reviewing the video transcripts, an overarching pattern of commentaries expressed the need for the workshop pace to be much slower. This brought the need to consider allowing more time to reflect and explain the intentions of the activities. The two workshops that enjoyed their experience and found it inspirational were also the two who were familiar with the participatory design research approach and conducted their company in a way that welcomes innovation from top management. These two workshops, WS3 and WS5, also strongly agreed to the statement, “I didn’t come with expectations,” which might also be coming to the workshop with an open mind. According to their wiki discussions during the workshop and questionnaire results, participants admitted to learning something new about themselves. One participant in WS 3 also reflected, “This was a blast! Seeing what my coworkers were inspired by,” was what she remembered most and found fascinating about the session. WS 3’s questionnaire results also reflected a strong agreement to the statement, “I’ve learned something new about myself.”

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78

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The majority of participants do not follow high tech website forums that discuss the latest technology gadgets or software. Many people were confused, but really enjoyed the challenge of learning something they have never experienced before. Most people who found the workshop inspiration from the workshop were graduate students, researchers, and designers who were comfortable defying “right answers” or massaging ideas before any design constraints were placed on them to produce a tangible outcome. The more cerebral designers appreciated the conceptual model represented by this radical methodology.

4.18 Analysis II: Collages & material usage The material that seemed to stimulate the most enjoyment was the pack of moss that was used in 4 out of 5 times in the workshops. According to the video analysis, the moss was consistently well-received with the most comedy relief and laughter about it. (See Table 5, page 88). The nutmeg and paperclips were tied for usage with 4 of 5 workshops including it into their collages. The second most frequently used materials included the Post-its, magnets, mittens, word clips, and yellow clips. Three of five workshops used these for their collages. Five other materials, according to video documentations, were explored but not integrated into the collages (the big, colored pins, the black Explosion markers from CrayolaTM, bobby pins, callous cushions, and safety pins). Possible reasons for the exclusion of certain materials may be the lack of time allotted for their respective activities. Workshop 5 was able to integrate the most objects into their collage because more time was unintentionally given to them when the moderator and storyteller was playing Cat’s Cradle five minutes longer than in the previous four workshops. Further analysis of the transcripts gives more detailed timing variances due to the enthusiasm of Workshops 3 and 5 that resulted in the moderator’s providing added time for their group discussions. Workshops 1, 2, and 4 did not seem as invested

79

or excited, as observed by the moderator during the workshops, therefore the shorter intended scheduled timing for the group activity was given. The timing for each group activity was heavily influenced by each group’s response to the moderator’s directions. Workshops 3 and 5 were the most eager for dialog and most comfortable with the rapid changes in directions during the sessions. They displayed no signs of difficulty or negative reactions toward the fast pace and ambiguous objective while brainstorming for the “Look and feel” of their “Intelligent machine or tool,” as their focus prompted by the moderator. Further observations noted by the moderator’s transcriptions and notes indicate a strong possibility of the moderator’s personality impacting each group’s performance. During Workshop 1, the moderator used fifteen minutes of workshop time to set up–with some assistance offered by the contact person–that gave more time for the participants to watch the set up process. While participants casually conversed amongst themselves, the video documentation showed the participants also taking notice of the moderator’s behaviors and curious about what was in store for them. All successive workshops were set up an hour prior to the participants walking in, so videos did not capture the same intensity in the atmosphere as Workshop 1. In one of the questionnaire responses for Workshop 5, participant 3 remarked the most memorable thing about the session was, “The teamwork and the moderator.” An evident contribution to the strong impression the moderator conveyed could be the added initial meeting to explain the immersion activity a week prior to the workshop, and the extended time given to the wiki discussion at the beginning of the workshop. Both these elements were exclusively added to Workshop 5 due to their request for more information, and the moderator’s added experience to supply them more detailed instructions on what to do. With each subsequent workshop came more confidence and clearer directions given by the moderator. Each added experience provided the moderator a stronger ability to prioritize more focus on timing and tone of voice, which also influences the emphasis of directions dictated to the groups, and more

80

awareness to each groups’ need, and the critical questions the individuals asked during the sessions. In the section on “Setting Respondent Expectations,” Moderating to the Max explains how a moderator needs to “understand the environment, situations, and contextual cues, as well as behaviors, as a valuable component to qualitative research.” (Bystedt, Lynn, & Potts, 2003) Varying preparation prior to the workshop also influenced the moderator’s physical alertness to react quickly and critically to questions that constantly needed clarification. Before workshop 2, the moderator did not get sufficient rest the night before. When participant 7 was stepping out for the scavenger hunt and asked, “Is it supposed to be one activity,” referring to his list that he didn’t know which to represent as objects for the scavenger hung. The moderator did not catch that and immediately responded, “Two objects…” After participant 7 clarified his confusion, the moderator encouraged him to represent as many as he could even when the initial directions announced to the group was to find two objects. As a result, sufficient rest and script rehearsal was a mental note the moderator made for the workshops that followed to avoid such conflicting directions, which was possibly an added reason for the last workshop’s success. Both the moderator and the participants’ enthusiasm reciprocate a dynamic that ultimately determines the level of energy in the workshop atmosphere. Even with sufficient rest and refined moderator script preparations, Workshop 4’s energy level plateaued that of the moderator’s because most of the participants had extremely mellow and calm personalities. One reason for the sluggish atmosphere could be the winter bug that everyone caught in the office caused the original workshop date to be postponed a week and a half later for participants to recover and return to work. These are all reasons the moderator must consider as not to neglect the unique context of each group.

81

strongly disagree neutral

strongly agree

I found my experience enjoyable.

ws ws ws ws

2 3 4 5

workshop workshop workshop workshop

2 3 4 5

I found inspiration from this session.

The people I worked with heightened my enthusiasm.

I'm accustomed to sessions like this one.

I would rather pick my own group member.

I wanted the session to be shorter.

strongly agree

I understood everything I was doing.

I found the instructions clearly given.

I learned something about myself from this session.

I didn't come with expectations.

I am curious how the study turns out.

Figure 36: All Workshops-Strongly Agree Analysis I

82

neutral

agree

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neutral

agree

Figure 37: All Workshops-Strongly Agree Analysis II

83

strongly disagree neutral

strongly agree

I found my experience enjoyable.

ws ws ws ws

2 3 4 5

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2 3 4 5

I found inspiration from this session.

The people I worked with heightened my enthusiasm.

I'm accustomed to sessions like this one.

I would rather pick my own group member.

I wanted the session to be shorter.

strongly disagree

I understood everything I was doing.

I found the instructions clearly given.

I learned something about myself from this session.

I didn't come with expectations.

I am curious how the study turns out.

Figure 38: All Workshops-Strongly Disagree Analysis I

84

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disagree

neutral

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2 3 4 5

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Figure 39: All Workshops-Strongly Disagree Analysis II

85

strongly disagree neutral

strongly agree

I found my experience enjoyable.

ws ws ws ws

2 3 4 5

workshop workshop workshop workshop

2 3 4 5

I found inspiration from this session.

The people I worked with heightened my enthusiasm.

I'm accustomed to sessions like this one.

I would rather pick my own group member.

I wanted the session to be shorter.

I understood everything I was doing.

neutral

I found the instructions clearly given.

I learned something about myself from this session.

I didn't come with expectations.

I am curious how the study turns out.

Figure 40: All Workshops-Neutral Analysis I

86

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agree

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2 3 4 5

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Figure 41: All Workshops-Neutral Analysis II

87

Table 5: Material usage count

workshops
1 2 3 4 5

materials used by workshops
beads black rocks candle cat toy cinnamon finger paint giant paperclips Kroger card magnet mittens moss nutmeg paperclips R Post-its ribbon rubberbands rubber thimbles sage sponge pieces swabs thread white pebbles wood sticks word clips yellow clips

materials NOT used, but explored
big colored pins black Explosion paper blue hermit crab sand bobby pins callous cushion purple sand safety pins

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4.19 Analysis III: Company cultures In light of the different atmospheres that influenced a workshop’s energy level and the moderator’s adeptness to encourage more exploration, each company’s culture supplied a different approach to how they received the research study. WS 3 and WS 5 both showed the most energy and confidence in their responses to the workshop. A possible influence might be that WS 3 is a design research company, and WS 5 has an in-house design research group. Both WS 3 and WS 5 were familiar with participatory research methods that used generative tools and collaging. (Figures 42-43) The moderator initially corresponded with the principals of WS 3 and WS 5, which immensely speeded the process of recruitment for the study. With innovative leaders supporting this exploration, all the participants expressed their curiosity to learn more about the study. This helped the moderator deliver the workshops with enthusiasm instead of skepticism. This was seen in the last statement of the questionnaire, “I am curious how the study turns out,” which everyone either agreed or strongly agreed on. The type of organization, or make-up of the design team, participating in this type of participatory ideation workshop greatly affects the time people take to feel comfortable with the process. According to the questionnaire results that rated how familiar participants were with the methodology, participants in WS 3 and WS 5 showed the highest number of participants who were familiar with the types of methods used in this study, which related to their strong agreement to how much they enjoyed the workshop. On the contrary, WS 1 and WS 2 had design teams that were unfamiliar with participatory research methods. Although WS 1 did not respond to the post questionnaire, WS 2 expressed the most confusion with the whole workshop process compared to the other four workshops. Knowing the company culture and whether or not they have had exposure to alternative idea-generation techniques will aid one to gauge how long a workshop should be extended.

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4.20

Pamphlets and gift cards: Responses

Everyone was pleasantly surprised and happy to have been rewarded after feeling challenged by the workshop. The pamphlets were well-received and usually welcomed with, “Oh! Thank you so much! That’s very kind of you.”

4.21 Post-workshop moderator tasks: Observations After packing all the trays in their designated plastic containers, the questionnaires were gathered and the moderator shook each participant’s hand before they stepped out of the room. In all the workshops, one of the participants would offer or actually volunteer to help the moderator clean-up and collect materials. Only workshops one and two had the contact persons as the ones who helped out. In the other three workshops, participants chatted with the moderator while she packed up. Pictures or video capture were taken of the collages before they were rolled up. Some disassembly of collage materials was necessary, but otherwise kept in tact as much as possible. All video and audio equipment were packed first and returned after the sessions. Documentations, collages, and questionnaires were immediately grouped into bins for later transcription and analysis purposes. The companies with the most open and playful cultures were also the ones that had some experience in participatory research methods. These companies had participants who were bolder to push the boundaries of this methodology and did not hesitate to use all the materials provided during the workshop.

4.22

Summary

For moderators entering a firm unknown to them or not their own, it is important to gather as much information as possible about the company culture, their level of familiarity to design research, and the context of the recruited participants (whether

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or not they are accustomed to work together in the same team or not). More on refined moderator tips are found in the Moderator Guidelines in the Appendix A3. Innovators who seek to weave exploratory brainstorming techniques such as cocreation with wiki communities, using generative tools for research or team-building, and storytelling for project development may find this methodology more beneficial at a longer time frame, such as an expanding it incrementally fifteen minutes at a time. For future explorations, as discussed in Chapter 6 “Next Steps,” the fifteen minutes is a way to test adding more time towards either the wiki discussion, the field research simulation, and/or the storytelling aspect of the group activity. According to the questionnaire feedback, an overwhelming number of participants strongly disagreed to making the workshop shorter. From all five workshops came complaints of not having enough time. After careful reflection and data analysis, several points need to be noted and changed in the approach for researchers to further explore this methodology. Firstly, the workshops were too compact for their level of complexity. Secondly, more time was needed to round off concepts between each activity so as to reinforce a more direct and stronger learning experience for those interested. However, since time did not permit explaining the extra information, the research design deliberately focused on the playful attitude of the workshop instead of the analytical aspect of it.

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CHAPTER 5

CONCLUSION

5.1 Benefits: Flexibility of methodology To transfer this methodology from its pre-design state into the design process, it would imply applying constraints into its open exploration. This methodology is highly malleable, so its application retains a flexibility that makes it powerful and handy for both large scale research or small, internal explorations. However, further research is still necessary to verify its productivity. The wiki immersion activity, individual activity, and group actvity are all proven techniques to generate ideas in isolation, but as an integrated process it remains speculative. The ideation workshops for this methodology (in predesign) were found to be enjoyable and new to current design team brainstorming. Furthering this speculation, the methodology seems to be most favorable in its compactness and enjoyability. Five processes are consolidated into a one hour-long session covering the premises of a crowdsourcing, free association, field simulation, group collaging, and storytelling.

5.2 Guidelines: For moderator The moderator reinforces the etiquette of good team building skills. When negative comments arise, it is the moderator’s duty to maintain a positive and encouraging environment. Don’t allow the devil’s advocate to enter the discussion. It will

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unconstructively stamp out good ideas prematurely. Although the ideal moderator for this methodology is an internal member of a design team (preferably in rotation), the workshops that are conducted in this study are lead by the researcher instead of an internal member of the company. After conducting a series of six workshops, the lessons learned and key points to moderating design teams are best summarized in the Appendix A.3 “Guidelines For Ideation Workshop.”

5.3 Immersion activity: Managing time and increasing feedback The immersion activity is best conducted over a long span of time, as wiki responses are unpredictable and require patience. The best result in this study came from WS 5, when the immersion activity was explained in person a week before meeting for the workshop. Insufficient numbers of participants completed the immersion activity, which made the evaluation difficult to complete. WS 5 was the only group that had all the participants finish the wiki immersion activity. Several factors might have contributed to the low turn out of the immersion activity. First of all, the initial instructions emailed to the contact person might have been too complex to be presented as an email. It was unanimous during the workshop that participants did not understand how to follow the instructions to sign up onto the wiki and plant the guided questions onto the forums. Although no prior experience to wikis was necessary to participate in the original workshop, future workshops of this nature may require the researcher or moderator to introduce the activity in person prior to the workshop. The second reason for the low immersion activity turn out might have been because the researcher or moderator did not have any face-to-face time with the participants to explain the expectations of the activity. Additional explanation was deemed necessary since participants unanimously agreed that wiki interfaces were too complex and the

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wiki platform has not been widely adapted into their work currently. The fifth workshop expressed urgency in completing the immersion, or “homework,” before the discussion at the workshop. Of all five workshops, only WS 5 requested an additional meeting for questions and answers. During the workshop, WS 5 described their enthusiasm with the immersion activity. They seemed comfortable and determined to resolve the wiki challenge as a team. That attitude might have been the result of their company culture that was accustomed to celebrating alternative research methods, creative outlets, and expecting the unexpected. Based on wiki discussions at the workshop, the collaborative spirit intended for the immersion activity was best captured by WS 5. “The interesting dynamic I thought was fascinating was not necessarily the wiki itself, but all of us interacting asking each other, ‘What the heck is going on,’” participant 3 remarked during the wiki discussion at the workshop. The third possible reason for the lack of wiki participation might be the lack of a more user-friendly interface used for wikis. The confusion expressed by the professional designers and non-designers alike was due to the difficulty in navigation. According to WS 5’s wiki discussion, participants were lost as soon as they left the primary page. Even in search of more clues as to where the main forums and registration pages were became an unruly task. Finally, participants might have struggled with the wiki immersion due to the fairly unexplored nature of the wiki platform. According to the wiki discussion feedbacks, only four out of thirty-one participants used wikis actively (excluding pilot study participants). In other words, approximately one out of eight people in this study was familiar with the wiki platform. That is only 12% of industry professionals who work in design teams are familiar with using wikis. If design teams are the focal points of collaboration and interaction, and wikis are collaborative multimedia engines (Klobas, 2006), then collaboration and interactivity in a design team should not be limited in

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the types of media, instead, be open to exposing themselves to a highly collaborative, knowledge-sharing medium such as the wiki.

5.4 Materials: Selectivity based on design process Materials will need to maintain “freshness” if the same design team is using them for multiple projects. An important note is to include a variety of textures, colors, scents, and sizes. Materials shall be as abstract as possible, such as taking objects out of their original packages and arranging them in no order that suggests how they are related or used.

5.5 Individual activity: Script modification for future use After the multimedia warm-up on the wiki, the design team convenes for the face-toface workshop. The first activity is the individual activity. It can be modified beyond its pre-design purpose for an object-oriented problem solving methodology. In the pre-design phase, divergence with free association is the goal. However, when the individual activity is used to solve a specific problem, its repurposed to generate emotional and experiential problem statements. These statements serves as the guiding scenarios for the individual activity portion of the redefined methodology. To modify the individual activity for a specific client need, the design team first divides in two. These two teams will go into different rooms with their individual sets of images and blank pieces of paper to make associations on different topics. The moderator in the first group can ask the individuals to, “Use any words or images to describe the first thing that comes to mind when someone says [the client product, service, experience].” Another team facilitator for the second group can prompt the group with the out-ofcontext free association, “Use any words or images to describe what comes to mind when someone says [pick a random topic from an idea jar].” After this individual activity, the two groups come together to pair their scenarios to generate new associations as a group.

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The new associations will then be the basis for finding metaphoric objects or visiting actual sites that describe them during the field research activity.

5.6 Group activity: Script modification for future use The objects, observations, photos, and interviews the design team may have gathered will then be combined into the group activity. In the end, the storytelling can push the boundaries of free association one more time to see if more ideas can surface from the added information and metaphoric objects on the collage. In the case that this method is used for co-designing during the design process, the group activity will remain the same with the exception that the sentence to be completed will not be “My machine or tool will look and feel like this…” Instead, the sentence to complete will pertain to the problem statements generated from the individual activity.

5.7 Limitations of study The most immediate limitation to this study is due to the gradual, incremental changes made throughout the series of workshops–the qualitative data collected in this study is for exploration in the pre-design stage and not as the source of definitive conclusions. The intent of this study is to show the potential for a methodology that combines individually proven methods into one to generate a plethora of ideas. Another limitation of this study is it does not take into account the additional required knowledge and time to filter the ideas from the community through the wiki websites, or the monetary incentive that would be distributed to the groups of people involved in cultivating an idea through the wiki. “Often output is measured only by the number of ideas. This may be justified by the assumption that ‘quantity breeds quality,’” (Holt, 1996) however, in this study the ideas are not counted but narrated in a storyline. It is still up to the researcher or design team to distinguish the ideas that may be developed into

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workable analogies. After conducting the six workshops, it is still too early to make conclusions about the time-effectiveness of this methodology against ideas generated. Further research and exploration is needed. However, according to transcripts and questionnaire inputs, the experience was enjoyable and novel. The intentions of this methodology was to combine known brainstorming methods together into an enjoyable “game.” As Edward De Bono explains, “Generally you would play these games on your own (as with a crossword) and get a sense of achievement when you succeed. It is also possible, occassionally, to play with others and to compare your results...The intention is to train your creative mind... have fun. But it is serious fun.” (De Bono, 2008)

5.8 Directions for future research Future research still needs to be done in the areas of social networking tools via crowdsourcing. Through open source technology, such as T-Wiki, companies are using wikis internally to document projects, brainstorm on ideas together on a live document, and share knowledge that may be accessible anywhere and anytime from the wiki website. However, little literature is found on companies attempting to use wikis to build community with subject matter experts to cocreate. To start a company-community wiki, proper management and sharp focus as to what type of ideas are relevant will set the stage for cocreating with online subject matter experts. “Since 1995, a multitude of uses have been found for the technology and procedures of wikis, but there is little documentation about how they should be managed...Wiki management involves technology management, content management and social management of wiki contributors through policies or behavioral norms. All of these aspects need to be considered throughout the life of the wiki.” (Klobas, 2006) Wikis are still under-utilized in the discussion of innovation. Opportunities for continuted exploration can start in testing different ways to advertise

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public wiki so that contributors are aware of and interested in contributing to the knowledge pool. No literature has pinpointed one definite way to make a public wiki known to attract active public participation. Furthermore, future investigation is needed in the areas of storytelling and the different ways it is practiced in design. Some literature discusses storytelling widely used in teaching methods, but few are examined for design research. This methodology introduces an unconventional way of storytelling by MadLibbing the collage elements into an improvised plot. The effectiveness of MadLibbing versus the quality of ideas they produce have yet to be tested.

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CHAPTER 6

NEXT STEPS

6.1 Overview After a discussion of the lessons learned from conducting six workshops, this chapter delves into evidence that suggests further examination of the methodology and the possible implications of its impact moving forward. The following sections will tailor strategies that address specific problem statements as they may be applied to the design process; provide additional qualitative analytical methods for further steps taken exploring this methodology; and suggest an alternative approach of implementing the immersion activity. Tips and guidelines learned as a moderator are introduced in detail at the Appendix Section A.3 “Guidelines For Ideation Workshop.” To reiterate, the proposed methodology contains individual methods that are commonly used for generating ideas in international think-tank groups and design team brainstormers. More recently, these alternative brainstorming techniques, such as crowdsourcing, when used in a well controlled manner with careful filters, may lead to creative nuggets leading to innovative idea-generation techniques. But they are not commonly found in literature. Still, however, companies accessing non-traditional resources to tap into creative ideas of the masses have not made it mainstream mainly because it requires large monetary incentives to entice those retired scientists, university

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students, or obsessive hobbyists to participate in contributing their highly specific skills to solve these companies’ problems. Moreover, little literature is found documenting the methods used in the specific brainstorming sessions that are in-house or conducted by outsourced moderators of these successful corporate endeavors. Consider the case with IBM’s two-part innovation brainstormer in July, 2007, aimed to “tap into the collective minds of employees, family members, and customers to target potential areas for innovations,” utilizing crowdsourcing techniques toward the end of the brainstormer to vote on ideas. “IBM identified four large themes, providing interactive background information on each one, employing moderators to keep conversations focused, and setting a 72-hour time limit for the first session. By the end of it, IBM had collected 37,000 ideas. IBM will use its own crowd to filter the ideas. The company has made transcripts available to the 140,000 people who logged in to the first session and teams will review the posts. In early September, the company will host a second session, where everyone will again log on to the jam session to vote on the ideas with the most potential. Then senior executives will sift through this short list to make recommendations about which should be funded. [CEO Sam Palmisano] will have a hand in making the final choices.” (Hempel, 2007) Even beyond exploring a new methodology for generating ideas for corporate problemsolving, classroom think-tanks, or research consultancies, the process of this methodology also brings insight on how to challenge the boundaries of collaboration in pre-design.

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6.2 Further Explorations: Application to the design process To apply this methodology in the design process the design team must begin with a clear focus. Where and why do you want new creative ideas? (De Bono, 2008) “If you do not know what you are shooting at, you are rather unlikely to hit the target.” (De Bono, 2008) The design team can begin with the immersion activity that collaborates with online subject matter experts by creating a joint company-community wiki. This immersion will create a website dedicated to expanding on ideas fluidly with willing in-house creatives and the public. After ideas are created on the wiki website, the community is invited to rate the desirability of these ideas on another part of this website. Much like yet2.com and InnoCentive as a repository for innovative solutions, the joint company-community wiki may be a repository for working solutions and realtime idea generation for community participants. The ideas that will be used for further exploration will be tracked to the persons who have contributed to them based on the history logs on the wiki websites. The incentives will be dispersed to these wiki members or employees should their ideas be chosen. The filtered ideas will then be used in the individual activity to shape the emotional premise of the free associations in the form of words, images, and scavenged objects. In the event that more time and money may be allocated towards field research, a clear definition as to what are the specific examples of the “jobs” the target audience does around a product or service? “Customers are often trying to perform multiple tasks simultaneously. But companies tend to focus their products and services on performing a single task; to address ancillary as well as primary jobs would require them to develop new or different competencies or to cross organizational boundaries–something they

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may not believe they are prepared to do, financially or culturally...We have found that there are three different types of jobs that customers are often trying to get done in a given circumstance: functional jobs and personal and social jobs (two types of emotional jobs).

Job to Be Done Emotional Jobs Functional Jobs Personal Social

Figure 44: Types of Jobs (Ulwick, 2005)

After isolating the primary emotional jobs from the functional jobs that the target audience performs, the design team shall disperse into smaller groups to focus on the specific target audience jobs, such as the emotional (or personal) and social jobs. If a design team has a client requesting them to redesigned their sedan, the design team must first gather all the market research, budgeting, and time-to-market logistics of the project to determine how much exploration and research may be involved. If the project timeline allows for cocreation with online subject matter experts, a focused scenario in the form of a wiki website could be created to have users log in ideas. The website can take a form

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of storytelling where a couple weeks of the wiki is open for the public to contribute to one detailed story together. The criteria may be for users to submit short video clips of instructional videos on how to park, for instance. Have another person video tape how they get in and out of a car and where they find themselves going when they are in a good mood and out with the children. This activity can be more specific. Develop a persona that will guide one to set up the day-in-the-life-of scenario for online subject matter experts to understand the framework. These submissions may need a form of compensation for participants meeting the criteria of the client’s target demographic who are also willing to have themselves filmed. Another way to set up the wiki website dedicated to “a mother who drives with her children in the car” may be to ask different wiki communities or advertise your own wiki website for submissions of real stories. The stories will need specific parameters for acceptable stories chosen for further exploration. The focus will need to be on the emotional experiences while driving. The wiki website submissions can be one story pieced together by the whole community, or many separate stories written on the same webpage. The design team will need to have a rigorous team of internal researchers that can extrapolate the specific wants and needs underlying the most memorable stories, or ask the masses to rate the top 10 stories to narrow them down some more. Another more traditional method is learning about the target audience through field research. The design team may choose to explore how a mother purchases a car, for example, and identify how she may want to be able to transport her children from one location to another (functional job), “but she may also want to feel successful (personal job) and be perceived as attractive by others (social job).” (Ulwick, 2005) Design teams will break out into smaller groups to gather data–usually in forms of pictures, interviews, contextual inquiries, ethnography, or anthropological approaches (Ulwick, 2005). With information gathered from these processes, the design team comes together for the group

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activity to make a collage describing potential ideas for innovation. For example, if a client wants to design a brand identity for a new line of silk bedding, and provides all the benchmarking research for the project, the “inner” team will then list all the words that are associated with “silk,” “bedding,” and “silk bedding.” Then using as much time as the project permits, they will parallel these words with emotions and scenarios such as “relaxing,” “winding down to bed,” “dread,” “a gift on Christmas,” etc. Next, the “outer” group in another room will be producing a list of emotions and scenarios that have nothing to do with silk or bedding, but from random topics such as “What to do on a Sunday afternoon,” or “Underground rappers,” and see if pairings can be made when the two groups come together. The storytelling procedures will remain the same. The materials may also remain the same as long as they remain abstract. After the wiki immersion, the workshop shall begin with the wiki discussion to filter only the relevant ideas from subject matter expert feedbacks. Pertinent ideas that have been rated highly for desirability on the wiki website are considered for further ideation. The ideation workshop shall begin using descriptive words and phrases to evaluate and describe the ideas gathered from the wiki. These ideas may be written on sticky notes so they are transferable from wall to wall. After all the sticky notes have been gathered on the wall, begin clustering the descriptions by type. Some descriptions may be, for instance, categorized by function, activity, mood, etc. These clusters of descriptions shall be used for the group activity later. After evaluating the ideas derived from the wikis, the individual activity is next. The design team shall think of words or images that describe an experience related to emotions that come from mundane habits of everyday life that relate to how the problem at hand may also need to unfold in its ideal state. The moderator will begin by asking the design team to split into two groups, the “outer” and “inner” groups, to think of scenarios. The “outer” group will deliberately receive a frame of reference outside of the project scope

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in the form of a Random Word and be asked to think of all the emotions and scenarios associated with it. Then the “inner” group will receive the frame of reference related to the project scope to also do the same. The two halves of the group will reunite to compare their scenarios and make new associations with the combined scenarios. The quality of ideas generated from the individual activity needs to be evaluated for relevance, desirability, and potential-to-market. An experiment may be set up with two design control groups. The test is needed to verify whether or not the free association with the symbolic object as the third associative cue aids to producing relevant, desirable, and potential-to-market ideas or does stopping at the first associative cue with only images and words produce these ideas. Using the words collected from the individual activity, the design team shall break into smaller groups for a thorough field research activity–known as the scavenger hunt in this methodology. This methodology applied to the Design Process will not be a simulation for five minutes as suggested in this study. The field research, or scavenger hunt, shall be extended based on the budget and time constraints of the related project. Following the concepts of this methodology, the scavenger hunt clues shall be based on the descriptive words produced by the free associations made during the individual activity. The difference when applied to the Design Process is that the design team does not only find objects that represent their free associations, but they shall also find a compartive object based on market research for the discussion. The purpose of bringing a comparative object is not to constrain the idea generation process, but to generate an extended dialogue describing both objects and “looking into other worlds” between seemingly unrelated objects. By focusing on the stories and metaphors related to the objects, the moderator, or facilitator, encourages participants to elaborate on themes that will set the stage for possible experiential relationships between the symbolic objects and the scenarios they derived them from. The connection may not immediately surface.

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Figure 45: Recap–scenario 3. The last step of free association using symbolic objects

Therefore, the last step in this activity is to draw one more association to bridge the gap. Recalling the moderator’s script, participants are then asked to align the associations made from the first and second scenarios with the symbolic object in front of them. The placement is in order from left to right, the first scenario first, the second scenario second, and the two objects third. (Figure 45) Then the participants are asked to look from left to right across these components and make their final free association on paper. This last association is integrated into the group activity that follows. After sharing the stories behind the scavenger hunt objects, and making the last association, comes the group activity. Applied to the Design Process, the group activity shall use more elaborate scenarios as prompts for idea generation and the filtering of ideas. This incorporates both the divergence and transformation phases of the Design Process. Currently, the methodology suggests that the group activity begin immediately by picking a context from the individual activity. Each participant’s response to the first

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individual activity question is considered for the central theme of the group collage towards the end. The original prompt asks, “What words come to mind when you think of something working really well for you.” After the group chooses one response as their theme for the group activity, they need to use images, words, and objects to illustrate how they will finish a sentence that refers to the characteristic of the original question of “something that works really well for you.” The unfinished sentence the group will finish in the form of a collage is, “My intelligent machine or tool will look and feel like this…” However, in the case of a constrained design problem, both the individual and group activity will need to share that frame of reference in their prompts. For instance, a common design problem that may need to be resolved is, “How can we rebrand our identity?” (Michalko, 2001) Applying this question into the methodology will require rewording the individual activity questions and group activity statement to share the theme of “reinventing.” To do this, consider the individual activity beginning with this modified question: “What are the first words or images that come to mind when you think of something that never gets old?” Allow the participants to represent as many ideas as possible with words or images on their description papers. Then using a detailed scenario, the group activity may finish off a sentence that encapsulates a more focused frame of reference to guide the theme of their final group collage. The focused scenario may be: We stumble into a time capsule that quantum leaps us to the future in an advanced time with advanced people. The problem is we suddenly don’t speak the same language or look like we did before this dimension. We don’t recognize any of their machines, or have any of their natural powers to hover over everything. We know we must live here until we find someone who knows how to get us home. How do we gain their trust? From here, this scenario is displayed as an unfinished sentence on the board for participants to finish, and easily refer to, as they work on their group collage. This unfinished sentence may say, “We quantum leaped into an advanced time with advanced people, but we no longer

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look the same or speak the language like we used to. We’re strangers in a strange land and must live among these beings until we learn how to get home or find someone who can show us. We learn how to get home by…” From here, the focused theme to “reinvent” is infused seamlessly by taking descriptions from the individual activity describing “something that never gets old” and adding it to the group collage on “how to live among new beings.” Another common business problem may be, “How do we improve corporate communications?” (Michalko, 2001) Applying the frame of reference for “communications” into a modified individual activity prompt, the first question may be, “What kind of words or images come to mind when you think of things that say something to me?” Then upon introducing the group activity, describe this scenario, “Astronauts travel to Mars. While they are visiting Mars, the perception of events becomes different for each astronaut, depending on his or her prior history. They perceive everything differently. A sequence of events can be anything: quick or slow, orderly or random, causal or without cause, salty or sweet, and so on. How can they work together in order to return to earth?” (Michalko, 2001) The unfinished sentence that may help summarize this scenario to be displayed on the board may be, “As an astronaut arriving on Mars, I realize that all our perception of everything is off-kiltered. In order to return to earth, we need to work together by…” Essentially, the frame of reference is to figure out a strategy to communicate when all facilities are thrown off course and needs some imagination to solve. Another example of a common business challenge is how to create new marketing promotions. The individual activity may start out by asking the question, “What kind of words or images come to mind when you think of appreciating something?” To begin the group activity, have participants imagine this scenario: “We discover a group of primitive cave dwellers who live in the mountains and do not understand any language. How do we

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advance their lives?” (Michalko, 2001) This scenario sets the stage to find three distinct types of data that will inform the innovator, educator, or researcher about the solution to the problem; what jobs their target customers need to get done, or what they like to do; the outcomes that they may be trying to achieve; or the metrics they use to decide on a job-well-done; and the constraints that may prevent someone from using a new product or service. (Ulwick, 2005) In imagining how to advance the lives of a group of cave dwellers who do not understand any language, the channels of communications are uninhibited by words. The constraints, instead, are finding all the other ways people make each other understand one another. After a relevant scenario is properly posed, the activities that follow in the methodology will also have to be conscientious of time. This focused framework will require experimentation on time allocation. Since participants to include extending the duration of the ideation workshop from sixty to ninety minutes. Time stamps tracked by the transcripts show the sixty-minute time frame was not enough for two out of five workshops–WS 3 and WS 5, which exceeded a totol of twelve and seven minutes for the duration of their workshops, respectively. However, the timing of the individual activity for all five workshops did not reflect the overarching criticism of that activity’s being too rushed. Participants would exclaim, “Wait,” “Ack!” or “That’s too fast,” according to transcripts. By adding fifteen minutes to the proposed methodology, the moderator may allocate more time for transitions between each activity and recap what they have already done to make sense of the activities they have finished. The original methodology is a conceptual model for creative exploration during the pre-design phase, therefore it is easily applied in part, or full, into the creative problem solving strategies that are already practiced in design teams. The emotional tie-in frames the problem statements in a more personal light, therefore extending the depth of how the product, service, or experience can connect with the people who use them.

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6.3

Extended Data Analysis

A possibility for further data analysis beyond reviewing the video and audio documentation is having another researcher–or even someone from the company of the participating design team–take notes of the between-the-lines experience of the storyteller’s allegory as it is being told. The following is an example of the story participant 3 told in WS 3 based on the group collage. He was required to read from left to right, weaving objects into his improvised story: “So there was this big bang. The original, the world. Everything that’s around you that you see that’s inspiring to you that’s evolved through time. Something that’s expected, or unexpected. Everything. Everything started from the big bang. How many of you know about the big bang? You do? Some people don’t believe it, so I was just wondering. So from the big bang came the first human creation. Which is what...passion. The root of everything. So the root of creativity went into creating both hard objects and soft objects. The soft objects took us to nature. And the hard objects, the technology, the real...everything triggered our imagination. We looked at the nature, and we imagined things that we didn’t see. Which is this. Our idea was to provoke our imagination. Because we never feel satisfied. We always feel incomplete. And to have the sense of completion, we need to integrate ourselves with the rest of the world. Being creative about bridging us with the nature in a creative way. Things that we can use, make goods out of, we cuddle and live with. The creativity lies in being hands-on. Imagination is not enough. That’s why we need tools that brings out the dynamics in our imagination. Tools that are in our reach. Tools within reach to do what we want to do. We like to be with nature every time we fall short of inspiration. Or we don’t have something to be hands-on with and we go back to nature. We seek ideas within our own sensuality. We trigger our senses and look at the way we enhance our sensory experience. We make stuff that separates us from nature but then we quickly realize that things that

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are organic blends in with our lives. Things that are fluid and bring fluidity in our lives. So then we go back to the beach and relax.” What kind of experience is the storyteller concocting as the objects guide him through his story? He uses words such as “everything,” “imagination,” “creative,” and “nature” repeatedly. This storyteller also chooses to interpret the symbols and objects in a philosophical tone referring to emotions and perceptions. These are examples of observations that the note taker may be extracting from both the on-site journaling and from the transcripts. The original prompt was to finish the sentence, “My intelligent machine or tool will look and feel like this…” By extracting the between-the-lines observations from the story, further consideration is to parallel these experiential words and descriptions to that of the problem statement the collage is based on. In this case, the collages in the workshops were all revolving around the characteristics of their intelligent machine or tool. The storyteller’s allegory could then be distilled into a list of relevant sentences that will be the foundation of the ultimate experiential goal for the ideas that were stimulated from it.

6.4

Continued Investigation: Wiki immersion activity

As the activity was intended to be a simulation, and the exploration was designed for the pre-design phase with no subject to constrain the immersion, further explorations of the wiki immersion might include a public wiki page set up by the researcher that engaged the simultaneous commentary of all five workshop participants on a designated design problem. A week could be given to all participants to contribute their knowledge to the wiki webpage. Then the wiki could be open for public feedback and contributions set up as a design challenge with intellectual property surrendered, but a monetary reward for the users who contributed to the idea with the highest possibility for innovation. This wiki exploration might be a stand-alone activity. After the workshop participants logged on

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the designated week of the exploration, another two weeks could be allocated to observe public commentaries or contributions. The most difficult thing about wikis is visibility and time effectiveness–attracting the online subject matter experts to the active page and having these experts actually contributing their knowledge within the time frame of your project. Good planning and prior preparation is required. Flyers, advertisements, and word of mouth spreading news of the research in a university at least a month in advance is one way to sample a pool of people to the wiki page. Posting news on social networking platforms well in advance to the research is another channel. Sending mass emails to design professionals through creative communities such as CSCA, AIGA, IDSA, etc might be another method to call for creative rigor. However, “an estimated 90 percent of research and development is still performed internally. ‘Most R&D organizations cling to the invention model, ‘ says Larry Huston, P&G’s vice president for innovation and knowledge. ‘You develop a bricks-and-mortar infrastructure, you recruit the best people, and you develop global presence. Once you’re global, you start to do R&D in different parts of the world, and then the next stage is to link them together so you can transfer ideas internally.’ The problem with these incremental changes is that they are ‘bandages on a broken model,’ says Huston.” (Tapscott & Williams, 2006) Accessing the world’s talents and skill set is the idea of a truly competitive company. “Smart companies will treat the world as their R&D department and use ideagoras to seek out ideas, innovations, and uniquely qualified minds on a global basis. As P&G CEO A. G. Lafley put it, ‘Someone outside your organization today knows how to answer your specific question, solve your specific problem, or take advantage of your current opportunity better than you do. You need to find them, and find a way to work collaboratively and productively with them.’ That’s what ideagoras are for.” (Tapscott & Williams, 2006) Ideagoras are marketplaces for ideas, innovations, and uniquely qualified minds. (Tapscott & Williams, 2006)

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APPENDIX

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION

115

Recruitment Script (alternate for email)

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Figure 46: Script sent to participants through contact persons

116

Moderator Script
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Figure 47: Moderator script

117

Guidelines For Ideation Workshop (Part 1)

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Figure 48: Guidelines for working with a new design team (part I)

118

Guidelines For Ideation Workshop (Part 1I)

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Figure 49: Guidelines for working with a new design team (part II)

119

Guidelines For Ideation Workshop (Part 1II)

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Figure 50: Guidelines for working with a new design team (part III)

120

Immersion Instructions (Part I)

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Figure 51: Immersion activity handout given a week prior to workshop 121

Immersion Instructions (Part II)

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Figure 52: Immersion activity handout (part II) 122

Moderator’s pre-workshop checklist

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Figure 53: Moderator’s materials and equipment checklist for packing

123

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