DIY talk and workshop at the London Design Festival

As part of the enthralling week long London Design Festival celebrations, STBY gave a talk and hosted a fast paced workshop using tools from the DIYToolkit last week. The event kicked off with talks on how practitioners, policy makers and consultants have currently been using and shaping the practices, methods and principles of service design.

Some talks were personal stories of growing within the field while others looked to the key challenges they faced on client projects. STBY’s Geke spoke about how we use service design principles in our work and showed how these have been incorporated while making the ubiquitously popular ‘This is Service Design Thinking’ as well as the latest ‘DIYToolkit’. The creation of both these toolkits have been an opportunity for STBY to not just reflect but further share design practices and knowledge.

The second half of the workshop then served as an introductory session to service design approaches using the DIYToolkit. This hands- on workshop setting served as the perfect setting for participants to try out the tools for themselves. For the sake of simplicity we focussed on three key steps of exploration, ideation and refinement, with the session being facilitated in groups by Bas, Geke, Megha from STBY as well as James from Design Thinkers Group. The session was based on three common yet complex social challenges based on recently published papers that participants chose from:

1. How can we plan, develop or manage successful public spaces to build stronger communities?
2. How can we encourage and empower more people to not throwaway but repair and reuse their things?
3. How can we promote local food as a way to support healthy lifestyles?

Going from the early scoping stages of defining key issues to how to potentially implement an idea for long term change in a two hour session was nothing short of a challenge itself. In that respect, the session wasn’t so much about solving problems but a practical learning space which acted as an introduction to a different way of thinking and methods. The DIY tools proved themselves yet again as we customised them and used them not just as visuals that needed to be filled but artefacts that facilitated conversations between team participants.

In all, we were very happy with the reactions and feedback to the talk and the workshop at the London Design Festival and are looking forward to be back next year for the next year’s festival. The event, organised by Lior Smith, took place in the Designers’ Block amongst the enchantingly atmospheric Plumen ‘Glowing Oak’ installation on 19th Sept.