Understanding, identifying and driving design-led innovation capability in large organisations

Close-Debais, Sonya, Matthews, Judy, & Wrigley, Cara (2016) Understanding, identifying and driving design-led innovation capability in large organisations. In 20th DMI: Academic Design Management Conference, Inflection Point: Design Research Meets Design Practice, 28-29 July 2016, Boston, USA.


Corporations are exploring innovations by changing from a product push towards a service or experience model. To enable this transformation, programs to construct design thinking are being deployed across many organisations to drive innovation practices and ultimately sustainable growth. Yet, there is limited understanding on how individual employees view design, how it is being employed and the relationship of design thinking to innovation. This paper aims to investigate how employees (non-designers) within a large financial services corporation recognise the possibilities of design and its link to drive innovative practices and how design is being adopted. The paper builds on an audit undertaken of Design Thinking programmes rolled out across the large financial services organisation in Australia, in addition to thirty-one (31) semi-structured interviews conducted with employees across various levels of hierarchy. The results suggest that deploying design and innovation programmes across an organisation does not automatically result in significant innovative outcomes. Instead, design is linked to incremental innovation and internal process improvement at best, with limited effect on the strategic issues. The findings provide insights into employees’ experiences with applying design-led approaches and the barriers required to be overcome in order to achieve a different outcome in the business.

Impact and interest:

Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

38 since deposited on 23 Aug 2016
38 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 98290
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Design Thinking, Design-led Innovation, Financial Services, Design Innovation
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > DESIGN PRACTICE AND MANAGEMENT (120300) > Design Innovation (120302)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Current > Schools > School of Management
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 The author(s)
Deposited On: 23 Aug 2016 23:38
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2017 02:26

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page