About the book
All companies need a business strategy and a visual profile. They must also be able to communicate what products and services they can offer their customers. At the intersection of strategy and design is the key to success. This is where the gold is found.
The book «Design and strategy» bridges the gap between strategy and design. It presents an overall design process with a strategic approach, as well as a variety of methods for insight, strategy development, design methodology and problem solving. The book can be used as a handbook when planning and working with design projects, or any project, to ensure strategic anchoring of the process and outcome.
Strategic design development requires the right processes and methods for insight, analysis and strategy development, and the ability to incorporate this strategy into the design process to solve a problem and create targeted results. That is what the book is all about. The book presents a wide range of processes and methods for strategic design development.
«Design and strategy» addresses both the company and the designer. For the company, it is important to see the value of design as a strategic tool for positioning, competitiveness, value creation and innovation. For the designer, working on assignments for companies, it is crucial to create solutions that are strategically anchored and contribute to the company achieving its goals. Thus giving the business a good return on their design investments.
My main purpose and reason for writing the book, was that I saw a need for a book that presented a complete design process, with emphasis on processes and methods to work strategically with design. I wanted to influence the way one think of design, not only as shape and color, but as strategy, process and problemsolving.
The subject of design is expanding into ever new areas, within economics, technology and interactions, as well as it is increasingly linked to problem-solving of major complex problems: those involving infrastructure, housing problems, climate crises and social responsibility.
As designers we can use our strong influence as role models when it comes to important societal and human issues such as environmental considerations, equality, ethics and other sustainability ambitions.
“Design and strategy” will be published in English in 2022 by the international publisher Routledge. The book was first published in Norwegian language September 2018 and is now printed in third edition.
Strategic design is a way of developing and using design that is aligned with the company's overall strategy and goals, to help the company achieve its business objectives or other goal achievements, internally in the company or externally in the market.
Design is a large multidisciplinary area that oscillates between free art on the one hand and business operations on the other. The direction of art is often more individual, while the direction of business operations is more commissioned. The figure illustrates where strategic design is located closer to the business.
There are three main characters in the book, which is the designer, the company and the user, who is the subject of their attention. The user is the most important person. Without the user there will be no assignments and no design.
The key concept of the book is a phase system, from which the reader can navigate by. The phase system represents the main phases of a strategic design process. Although the process is presented linearly, we navigate back and forth and circularly in the phases.
The phase system appears as a navigation structure on every right page in the book. This way, you always know where you are in the process.
The book is first and foremost a handbook, a step-by-step guide, that can be used as a tool in the planning and development of a design project or any project. The clue is that you read and pick out what you need at any given moment.
This makes the book suitable both as a syllabus and a professional handbook. Designers and businesspeople are the main typical users of the book, either as professionals or students.