This course enables students to research and analyze the functions and purposes of design management and its relationship to strategic and operational values of organizations. The course aims to provide students with advanced and integrated understanding of the role and purpose of design managers, and the specific skills and capabilities required for managing design projects. The course will give students the enhanced understanding of the relationships between strategy, design and management, and provide the specialized knowledge and skills required to be an effective design manager.
Methods for Design Research
This course aims to immerse students in a range of research approaches and methods that enable designers in an academic or professional setting to explore relevant questions and generate reliable knowledge to solve diverse design problems. It addresses issues of relevance, soundness, scope and innovation in research design and methods, and clarity, accuracy, precision, consistency, relevance and depth in the analysis and presentation of research findings. In discussing the ethics of social research and the regulatory frameworks around data collection from human subjects, students are challenged to exercise sound judgement, fair-mindedness and intellectual integrity in the conduct of research.
Designing for Change
This course focuses students on developing a foresight approach to innovation and design, adding a range of foresight tools and methodologies to existing innovation and design processes. The course therefore aims to extend the students’ thinking in terms of creating solutions to design briefs that go beyond the traditional boundaries considered. The course encompasses the societal and commercial/business aspects of innovation and design in a foresight context.
Strategic Design Practice
This course extends conventional models of management in the design of human systems and services to an innovative strategic-based approach for designing solutions to complex problems in contested settings. Drawing on systems and complexity theories and leading complexity practice frameworks, students will experience a different approach to design practice to prepare them for leadership roles in a range of complex design contexts. Students will also experience a strategic complexity-based approach to different levels of participation in design from client/stakeholder participation to co-design.
Design Futures is an interdisciplinary course that aims to connect theory and practice. It aims to take a critical approach to imagining and practicing a more socially and environmentally responsive design process and will encourage risk taking, critical contextual thinking, innovation and imagination. Its focus will be on collaboration and response- the ability of the designer to respond to complex, urgent, complicated issues in ways that are critical, sustainable and change oriented. The course aims to educate students to become leaders and collaborators and to envisage the role of design in future economies. The students reflect on current practice enabling them to re-imagine their role as strategists, critical design thinkers and positive agents of change.
Sustainable Systems Design
This course introduces advanced systems-based sustainability thinking through a review of ed sustainability practice frameworks, and provides opportunities for students to apply this thinking to designing appropriate responses to complex sustainability problems. This course will prepare students to lead processes for activating and embedding sustainability culture and practice in businesses, government and non-government organizations, social enterprise, community groups and project teams.
Research Methodology & Business Reporting
The first part of this course provides a comprehensive theoretical and practical framework for business research. It introduces the processes for developing research and considering different research designs and approaches together with statistical methods for data analysis and interpretation. The second part of the course teaches students how to report and present research findings using computer technologies and other presentation aids.
This course is designed to enable students to identify central issues and problems in business organizations to suggest alternative approaches and then present well-supported recommendations for future actions. The course will accomplish these objectives by explaining concepts and theories useful in understanding the strategic management process. The course will cover topics such as characteristics of strategic decisions, strategic decision makers, social responsibility and ethics in strategic management, situation analysis and corporate strategy, business and functional strategies in addition to strategy implementation and control. A case-study oriented approach will be heavily used in this course.