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Design Research

Collection of the research projects during the masters at Delft University of technology

WWWWH of Decisionmaking


Decision-making plays a very important part of managing a business. This research investigated about the different factors which affect decision making in New Product Development. The task was to investigate the innovation practices in the real world; if and how they were different from what have been reported in books and literature so far.

My contribution:

Desk research, user interviews, analysis and insights, presentation and paper writing

The approach focused on studying companies as they grew from small one or two member startup firms to bigger organizations. We focused on qualitative research with semi structured interviews with managers at different levels in these companies. We found that companies are more creative, passionate and intuitive when they are smaller whereas they become multi layered, hierarchical and less intuitive when they grow bigger. The layered top down structure gives rise to many more complex factors which influences decision-making.

Representation of different factors influencing decision making in different organisations

This research paper was presented at the Product Development and Management Association Conference, The Hague on 22nd June 2011. For more details on this research, Click below.

WWWWH of Decisionmaking

Presentation at PDMA conference and recommendations

Design, Meanings and Radical Innovation

This research paper discusses radical innovation, more specifically the design of product meanings, in the context of the tendency of companies to realize increase in sales numbers with the minimum amount of changes in (re) design. Two approaches, i.e. design-driven innovation (Verganti, 2008) and Vision in Product design (Hekkert & Van Dijk, 2010), both explicitly posit product meaning as an important concept in innovation.

Based on a comparison of both approaches, we suggest that the focus on meaning in design has the potential of benefitting design companies as well as society. When product meaning is put central in both marketing and design, it is possible to establish successful design agencies that realize meaningful and long lasting products.

Vision in Product Design By Paul Hekkert and Mathhijs Van Dijk

It was presented in IASDR2011, the 4th World Conference on Design Research, which was organized by the International Association of Societies of Design Research (IASDR) and Delft University of Technology (TU Delft).

Click the link below for the entire paper.

Design, Meanings and Radical Innovation

Context Mapping: Shaving habits of men

Contextmapping is a procedure for conducting contextual research with users, where tacit knowledge is gained about the context of use of products. It aims to inform and inspire design teams, where users and stakeholders actively participate in the design process to ensure a good fit between the design and the use of a product.

Shaving habits of men was an exercise in Context mapping to study behaviour, products as well as rituals related to shaving. After deriving important observations from the qualitative interview transcripts of different users, a mind map was created to understand the context and different emotional and social aspects connected to shaving as a ritual for men.

The observations were later distilled to come up with some important requirements of the user. These requirements were concrete/tangible and explicitly spoken out by the users in their interviews or were more abstract and emotional aspects important to shaving as a ritual.

Context map: Shaving for men

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