Stanford Design Thinking Top Resources

Discover these great tools, articles and resources from Stanford (and the d.school) about design thinking and innovation.

One of the leading design thinking sources we follow is the Stanford d.school. Their website contains useful information and special tools that can be used throughout the design thinking process, from ideation and brainstorming to collaboration and prototyping. Keep reading to find the top articles and resources from Stanford about design thinking and innovation.

Stanford Design Thinking Articles

The Stanford d.school has a host of articles on their website that discusses practical tips and advice for design thinking in action. Here is a round-up of their top articles for you to review.

  • Design Across Borders: This article ponders how people can effectively work together and innovate across spaces and cultures, with a set of tips on how to run your remote teams more successfully.
  • Designing for Influence: The Power of Performance: This article provides an example of design thinking in action through the empowerment of female scientists. We love the learnings provided at the end of the case study, including the need to use empathy in design.
  • How to Inspire Upper Management with Empathetic Data: An article outlining how to collect empathetic data through simple prototyping, so that you can make smart decisions about your organization.
  • Using Design to Design Learning Experiences: This article is a collection of lessons learned from a d.school teaching fellow. They can be especially useful for facilitators of innovation or those in a training or leadership position at your organization.

Design Thinking Stanford Resources

These design thinking Stanford d.school resources are free to use and easily accessible on their website. We love their downloadable guides and walkthroughs of the design thinking and innovation process.

  • Design Thinking Bootleg – This classic guide provides you with a series of tools that can be used throughout the design thinking process. The downloadable deck includes cards to help you move through the process and think critically and creativity about your challenge. They are very simple and easy to use, and can be modified to fit your own work!
  • Getting Unstuck – Sometimes in the design process you can get stuck with no new ideas or solutions to your creative problem. This audio experience is designed to help you move past this roadblock and re-frame your challenge in a way that will allow you to succeed. We like that it works for both facilitators of design thinking or innovation as well as individuals or entrepreneurs working on their own challenge.
  • Inspiration Walk – Another common roadblock in the creative process is a lack of inspiration or fresh ideas. This outdoor-centered audio experience talks you through the experience by providing you opportunities to see things differently and unlock new solutions. You can download the audio and take it with you on your outdoor walk.
  • Equality Centered Design Framework – This Google Slide Deck presents an equity framework for the design thinking process. This adds two new modes to the process – Notice and Reflect, which bring self-awareness and vulnerability to design.
  • Get Started with Design Thinking – This collection of tools and activities presents an introduction to the design thinking Stanford d.school framework. The Foil Challenge and Facilitators Guide can be helpful when teaching students or employees the fundamentals of innovation theory.
  • How Might We Questions – This series of questions can be used when brainstorming ideas and solutions. Gain a new perspective or look at your problem from many different angles with this unique downloadable tool.

These design thinking articles, tools and resources from Stanford can serve as inspiration for your next creative problem solving challenge.

Find more valuable insights into the design thinking process on our innovation and design thinking resources blog.

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