May 9, 2014

Innovation & Design Thinking, with Dr. Leticia Britos Cavagnaro

Dr. Leticia Britos CavagnaroDr. Leticia Britos Cavagnaro joins us for the 14th episode of "The Innovation Engine" podcast to discuss how individuals and organizations can use design thinking to fuel their innovation efforts. Design thinking is a problem-solving approach that has become well known in the corporate world in recent years thanks to pioneers like IDEO's David Kelley.

Dr. Britos Cavagnaro is Deputy Director of Epicenter, the National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation. Epicenter is a partnership of Stanford University and the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance. She is also a lecturer at Stanford’s Hasso Platner School of Design, commonly known as the, where Dr. Britos Cavagnaro teaches university students of all disciplines how to build their creative confidence to become engines of innovation in their own lives, and as members of teams and organizations.

In this episode of the podcast, we look at some of the core tenets of design thinking - like empathy - and some of design thinking's potential benefits. We also look at a few design thinking tools and concepts like prototyping "at the speed of thought" that individuals can use to apply design thinking in their everyday work lives.

Other highlights from the conversation include:

  • The importance of space and physical environment on a team’s performance. For those interested in reading up on the topic, Dr. Britos Cavagnaro recommends Make Space: How to Set the Stage for Creative Collaboration by Scott Doorley and Scott Witthoft
  • Why to place an emphasis on approaching problems as a "learner" instead of a "knower"
  • How design thinking helps ensure that you build products for which there is an actual need
  • Why design thinking can be a preferable approach to traditional methods of research like surveys
  • The upcoming MOOC that Dr. Britos Cavagnaro is working on where students will be looking to apply design thinking to help solve the National Academy of Engineering's "Grand Challenges"

Interested in hearing more? Listen to the full episode via the Stitcher Radio embed below.

You can also download and subscribe from iTunes on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod, or listen on any device with a mobile browser via the podcast’s home on Stitcher Radio.