Shaping wicked problem solvers: innovating education programs through design thinking
Abstract: Societies across the globe are facing many unprecedented challenges; climate change, pandemics, and resource depletion, just to name a few. These societal challenges, the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, and companies’ demands about knowledge and skills required from future employees have put pressure on academia to develop suitable education programmes in many disciplines, including product development and mechanical engineering. In this position paper, we present our work undertaken in phase-1 of the development of a new MSc programme in the field of product development and mechanical engineering at Blekinge Institute of Technology, aimed at addressing changing societal needs and demands of the future industry. We employ a generic design thinking approach, starting from key stakeholder needs with iterative execution of needfinding, benchmarking, and ideation. In these steps, we use several data collection and generation methods such as interviews, surveys, and workshops. The main outcome of phase-1 is the overall programme structure, consisting of three main focus streams — the engineering design core, three academic specializations (Product-Service Systems Design, Data-Driven Design, and Simulation- Driven Design), and the practical application profiling. Based on our experience of developing the overall programme structure, we offer recommendations for developing new programmes in this area.
design education, product development, design thinking, wicked problems, t-shaped engineers
Johansson, C., Jagtap, S., Bertoni, M., Bertoni, A., & Wall, J. (2020). Shaping wicked problem solvers : innovating education programs through design thinking. In Proceedings of NordDesign 2020, Lyngby, Denmark, 12th – 14th August 2020 : Balancing Innovation and operation. Lyngby, Danmark. https://doi.org/10.35199/NORDDESIGN2020.26