Design Approach & Philosophy

“The world is complex, and so too must be the activities that we perform. But that doesn’t mean that we must live in continual frustration. No. The whole point of human-centered design is to tame complexity, to turn what would appear to be a complicated tool into one that fits the task, that is understandable, usable, enjoyable.” – Don Norman

The Double Diamond of Innovation:  While it seems every designer, design agency, and design institution has its own take on representing the design process, I have recently found this representation useful in the contexts in which I have been working at Penn Medicine.  It demonstrates the need and value of divergent and convergent thinking while at the same time implies an aspect of rigor and structure that is inherent in good design process. In this visual, it is important to note that while this framework seems somewhat linier and ridged it is cyclical and one may not necessarily start from the beginning. For instance exploring and testing multiple solutions, if done quickly and with limited resources may be a more appropriate starting place to gain contextual insight.   This being said, this is much more useful in pointing to where you are and where you should be going next in a given project rather than a standard sequence of events. A successful design project will have gone through each of these touchpoints at least once before yielding any valuable, tangible results that can be scaled to full implementation.

The Double Diamond of Innovation:
While it seems every designer, design agency, and design institution has its own take on representing the design process, I have recently found this representation useful in the contexts in which I have been working at Penn Medicine.
It demonstrates the need and value of divergent and convergent thinking while at the same time implies an aspect of rigor and structure that is inherent in good design process.
In this visual, it is important to note that while this framework seems somewhat linier and ridged it is cyclical and one may not necessarily start from the beginning. For instance exploring and testing multiple solutions, if done quickly and with limited resources may be a more appropriate starting place to gain contextual insight.
This being said, this is much more useful in pointing to where you are and where you should be going next in a given project rather than a standard sequence of events. A successful design project will have gone through each of these touchpoints at least once before yielding any valuable, tangible results that can be scaled to full implementation.

Point of View…

To put it simply, I believe my role as a designer to be the mediator and facilitator of people and the world around them. To discover, understand, and translate needs into viable solutions that empower people to engage in new and meaningful ways…

Background,

I utilize an empathic design approach, viewing current and potential users of products, information, environments, and services as the experts of their own experience. With this philosophy, my design process, and project framing, begins with contextual research to gain a deep understanding of the ways in which people view and interact with the world around them. The insights gathered, stories I hear and interactions I observe allow for the informed development of new products, services and systems that can be rapidly validated and iterated upon.

I received a Masters of Industrial Design (MID) from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia and a BFA in Graphic design from The College of New Jersey. I have worked with both for-profit and non-profit organizations in and around the Philadelphia area. In this work I have led and facilitated collaborative design projects involving end-users and other stakeholders around such topics as independent living for the disabled, community capacity building and engagement, and re-thinking the public library with The Free Library of Philadelphia.

Much of this work has been aimed at creating positive social impact in communities and organizations. This passion has brought me to health care and the University of Pennsylvania Health System for the opportunity to work towards improving the experience and value of care for both patients and care providers. Something I find to be the ultimate service design challenge. I am currently with the Penn Medicine Center for Health Care Innovation in this area.

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