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Design Thinking and Diversity

Kelli Brown



Once in a while I’m in a meeting and we’re talking about design thinking or human-centered design.  The conversation will be rich and thoughtful with people who have a cursory knowledge of the topic heralding how we need to use it in public education, an idea I wholeheartedly agree with. At the tail end of that conversation, someone will  sometimes say “We have to keep in mind that design thinking doesn’t include diverse voices so we have to keep an eye towards equity.” It’s in that moment I’m always taken aback.  The basic knowledge I have about design thinking is that the only way you can come up with innovative practices or effective services is if diverse voices are included.

To help us understand a little more about design thinking and how you can’t have an  impactful design session without that session being diverse and culturally responsive is Sarabeth Berk who  leads the cross-campus Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative at The University of Colorado Boulder, and Katie Johnson  a Senior User Experience Researcher with EchoUser in Boulder, Colorado. She spends her waking hours trying to understand and empathize with people to design and deliver delightful experiences.

Looking for resources on design thinking? Check out our resources page.  Below are some of the specific tools and resources given during the podcast:

Google Sprint Kit

Assumption Mapping