Service design PhD education as springboard for social innovations: facilitators and challenges

2015-08-18T14:05:17Z (GMT) by Kathy Lo
Service design PhD education can act as a springboard for social innovations. This paper proposes five educational emphases that facilitate this goal and discusses their challenges. The PhD education journey starts with a vision focused on social sustainability. The relational dimension in design is explored as critical knowledge that informs the PhD research. Collaborations with communities or organizations need to be incorporated in the research methods. Ideally, research outcomes can involve proposing a service system or service improvements supported by hybrid touchpoints, and the potential for social impact should be part of the PhD research's contributions. This paper contributes to the discussion of design education and social innovation by explaining social driving forces for this educational approach, the five educational emphases, their relationship to elements of PhD research, their challenges, and current PhD research topics.