Call Us: US - +1 845 478 5244 | UK - +44 20 7193 7850 | AUS - +61 2 8005 4826

Behavioral and Brain Sciences

In this paper we explore assumptions about ‘core design thinking and its application’ as outlined by. We do this with a focus on how cultural contexts shape design thinking ( Our contribution is towards a dynamic and situation specific analysis and model of how cultural contexts shape the unfolding of design thinking, exemplified with data from the DTRS11 data set. Dorst’s core design thinking ‘equations’ help formulating a clear and easy to follow analytical scheme, and they provide an overview of how thought processes can lead to innovation and “outside the box” thinking. However, as Dorst himself acknowledges, his approach is problematic, as design thinking cherishes multiple perspective and rich articulations over simplification. In line withthe oversimplification of the creative thought processes to be unaffected by cultural contexts. Kimbell’s paper on “Rethinking Design Thinking” emphasizes cultural components and external factors, which are hard to simplify without losing their meaning and therefore credibility. DTRS11: Design Thinking Research Symposium 2016 – Copenhagen Business School Our preliminary findings on how cultural context influence design thinking may hold significant promise to inform the DTRS11 community. An appropriate way of analyzing this is by going beyond the lens of our initial predefined code book based on Dorst’s core design thinking equations, and focus exactly on how culture play parts in the present data. This includes analysis of stereotypes, and the role of the facilitators (who are different in cultural background from the western designers). Our choice of theory for analyzing how the cultural contexts shape design thinking is the dynamic and situational social-cognitive theory of culture (Hong & Mallorie, 2004), which has been adapted to IT design (Clemmensen, 2009; Pineda, 2014). This theory suggests that people can have more than one (and sometimes conflicting) loose networks of domain-specific cognitive structures (implicit theories, beliefs) at a time. Which one of these is activated depends on what situational constraints are salient. Thus, the situation will determine which cultural cognitive system is accessible, available and applicable in the given situation. A Chinese-European will tend to think like a Chinese person when in a ‘Chinese situation’, and reversely, think like a European when primed by European icons, text, etc. The dynamic and situational social cognitive theory of culture is highly relevant in an analysis of the DTRS11 data, as it may be used to understand for example the group of Western designers’ available cultural knowledge (including their stereotypes of customers/users and Eastern facilitators), the priming of their thinking by the design artefacts and material, and what is socially appropriate to say and do in the different design situations