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June 03, 2008


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Laura Sorvala

This is an encouraging example of 'co-design' actually taking place. Ideally all projects and design processes should involve this approach – as designers our purpose is to provide a client an outcome matching what they need.

Communication is a key factor in this – we must keep on asking questions, digging further and most importantly listening to what the client is trying to say.

It is often the case that a client will state their requirements and give a designer a brief with some more or less defining words – but this does not always mean it matches what the client actually means or needs. I think designers have to carry out their responsibility as professionals and bravely state where and if changes are needed – be it sometimes a delicate situation.

Back to the subject: this idea of user-centered design and user involvement has been around in the digital realm almost from the start. It is somehow odd that it has taken the Facebook explosion and other social marketing phenomena for companies to start realising that the Facebook founders really got onto something. Personally I don't see a big difference between the digital and other (eg printed) media regarding user input in the final outcome.

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