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Transformative Innovation

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About this course

This course is an open Continuing Professional Development course. In order to book, please follow the booking link, or if not available, fill out the enquiry form and a member of staff will be in touch with you shortly.   

Transformative business thinking goes beyond incremental improvement and differentiation, it develops new value propositions as a proactive initiative in response to shifting organisational, business, social and global challenges. This design-led action-based course brings together a team from across an organisation and leads them through the Northumbria Design Sprint, a creative and strategic design process to develop pathways to transformative innovation.

The Northumbria Design Sprint accesses and maps knowledge from an organisation’s network, dynamically positioning knowledge and perspectives against organisational priorities and social and technological trends. The sprint leads the team through rapid ideation, concept development and strategic planning to produce a number of transformative innovation pitches and exposes them to new ways of thinking and behaving.

Course info

Award Type Non Accredited Professional Short Course

Delivery Method Based at the Northern Design Centre for 5 intensive workshop sessions running 0930-1630.

Sector Design-led innovation

Study Mode 5 full days. Each day is a separate session in the connected suite of work and those days can be run consecutively or can be spread over a month.

Location Northern Design Centre

Duration 2 days

PRE-SPRINT MEETING DEFINING THE PARAMETERS WITH THE ORGANISATION'S LEADERSHIP In order to prepare for the course and ensure that the participants and the organisation maximise the value on offer, this pre-sprint meeting seeks to establish the nature of the challenge being tackled and the roles from within the organisation who are key to inform the activities and participant. DAY ONE: SET-UP DEVELOPING AN UNDERSTANDING OF THE ISSUES AND OPPORTUNITIES The objective of day one is to define the opportunity spaces to be tackled during the sprint. To achieve this insights, priorities, trends, issues and perceptions are gathered, mapped and explored. The team will define the challenge, the creative brief and its associated value statement, core objectives and scope. DAY TWO: EVOLUTION OF PROBLEM & SOLUTION SPACE INITIAL CONCEPT GENERATION The objective of day two is to generate lots of ideas. Using a range of creative techniques ideas will emerge and be developed into sets of concepts responding to the project’s creative brief. DAY THREE: STRATEGY DEVELOPING STRATEGIC IMPLEMENTATION PLANS The objective of day three is evaluate the value within the concepts and ideas that have been developed, to narrow down and focus thinking, making hard choices based upon organisational realities and being strategic. DAY FOUR: PREPARE & PITCH REFINE, SHARE AND VISUALISE The objective of day four is to further refine concepts and the strategic rationale in order to produce visualisations and communications of the core concepts that can be shared with colleagues from across the organisation or pitched to customers or partners. DAY FIVE: UNPACK & EVALUATE DOCUMENT, REVIEW AND PLAN There are three objectives to fulfill on the final day: objective one is to gather and review the week’s materials, packaging all that has been learnt and created; objective two is collate and reflect on feedback from the pitch; and objective three is to identify and reflecting upon learning from the week and how the innovation culture of the organisation can be enhanced. 

A facilitated workshop with iterative feedback and confirmation of understanding.

No formal entry requirements.

  • Understanding of a design-led creative process and behaviours to support transformative business thinking.
  • Experience of multidisciplinary co-creation and its value in supporting innovation.
  • New ideas and plans for moving the organisation toward greater resilience.

Neil Smith - Enterprise Fellow

Mark Bailey - Director of Innovation Programmes

Mark Bailey is Director of Innovation Design and a Teaching Fellow at Northumbria. He leads design-led innovation activities at Innovate (an off-campus innovation hub), the University’s partnership with Unilever and a number of other business partnerships. He has also established and co-leads the Responsible Innovation Practice research group. He teaches Design for Industry and Multidisciplinary Innovation. He has worked in HE for the past 18 years having previously worked on advanced passenger and business jet aircraft designs. He has also led a small design consultancy.

A highlight of his early consultancy career was designing the best-selling ‘Little Professor’ for Texas Instruments! Mark sees his purpose as being to launch people into the world with the knowledge, capabilities and creative confidence required to bring about positive change; he views designers as agents of positive change; his teaching is focused around this purpose. He teaches through the medium of collaborative projects with external partners believing that learning in authentic contexts is essential to establishing relevance.

Dr. Nicholas Spencer - Senior Lecturer

Nicholas Spencer is a Senior Lecturer and the Programme Leader for Multidisciplinary Innovation MA/MSc. He leads a team of academics from across the University’s expertise to run design-led student investigations at INNOVATE, the University’s multidisciplinary unit for external engagements. Recently work focuses on delivering combinations of social, organisational and commercial innovation using methods clusters to support design thinking. Recent collaborators include: Northumbrian Water, Percy Hedley Foundation, Reckitt Benckiser and Unilever. Nicholas’ research explores mindful, distributed and networked design activities. He explores co-creative methods and tools for facilitating these approaches and through practical applications with external organisations defines their value and impact. Through his work he helps organisations develop their innovation readiness and produces students who are equipped with mindful approaches to developing, mapping and considering innovation strategy.

Please register your interest for this course and we will be in touch once we have confirmed dates.

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