Don’t Go It Alone: Using Collaboration to Solve Creative Design Problems

Maria Giudice (Autodesk)
Average rating: ****.
(4.00, 4 ratings)

Great design ideas rarely spring fully formed from our brains. They’re usually a result of ideas from many people with different ways of looking at the problem, iterated over time.
And yet, most people tend to work in silos. They either work alone or they work with other like-minded designers, marketers, developers—other people who think like them. They miss out on the ability to see a problem from many different perspectives. This “siloed” way of working can be slow, and the resulting solution can be limited.

This session will look at the ways we can use collaboration to harness great ideas and then develop them into breakthrough designs. Through collaboration, we can generate and iterate on ideas much more quickly than we can working alone. And with the right team, this process can be enjoyable and rewarding.

We’ll look at ways to foster a collaborative culture within your
company. We’ll also look at specific participatory design techniques, including group brainstorms, sketching exercises, card sorting, and our own “paper doll” method of creating a web page, and examples of how we have used these techniques to solve real problems.

The ideas we will present are focused on solving design problems,
however, they could easily be adapted for any process that requires
creative problem-solving. You will come away with some cool ideas to try on your own projects as well as ideas for getting more fun out of your day job.

Three take-aways:
1. Making good ideas great: the role of collaboration in design
2. The art of co-creation; using participatory design techniques to generate great ideas and think outside the box
3. How to build a collaborative culture within your organization.

Maria Giudice


Maria Giudice is the CEO and Founder of Hot Studio, Inc., a San Francisco-based, human-centered design studio dedicated to making the complex beautifully clear. Maria is considered a pioneer in the field of information architecture and was prominently featured in the 1996 book Information Architects by Richard Saul Wurman. In 2002, she was included in the book 1000 Most Creative Individuals in the USA. Maria has coauthored two best-selling books about web design: Web Design Essentials and Elements of Web Design. Since 1997 Maria has lead Hot Studio’s team of individuals dedicated to creating design systems that are both beautiful and highly functional. Maria has more than 20 years of experience working with and mentoring people from many different disciplines. Maria holds a degree from the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, and has spoken about design and the power of collaboration at conferences around the world.

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Daniela Penati
01/14/2011 4:21pm PST

Thank you Maria.

I am definitely interested in your presentation; I am waiting for the schedule.

Picture of Maria Giudice
Maria Giudice
01/12/2011 11:37pm PST

Hi Daniela:

The only book I’ve come across that has some good techniques is Dave Gray’s book “Gamestorming”. I though about writing one though! Hope to see you at me session.

Daniela Penati
01/12/2011 7:47am PST

Are there any books that you recommend on this topic?

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