Public Services by Design

In 2010, I was appointed as a design team member on the Public Services by Design programme. The programme’s objective is to improve understanding of design through the proactive delivery of mentored support services, which help to build capacity within public services and is funded by the Public Sector Innovation Unit at the Department for Business Innovation and Skills.

My first ‘immersion day’, was a one day workshop run by a Design Associate and fellow experts from the Public Services By Design team. The workshop’s participants were a cross-section from the mental healthcare profession, and included a regional NHS manager. All participants wanted to experience how design-led innovation could offer new ways to improve Dementia Care Services for guests of nursing homes, who are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

The objective | To introduce participants to the collaborative (co-design) process, so that they could learn new skills and try them out within their organisations.

The response | The expert design team members worked closely with all the participants to lead them through a one day workshop, using specially designed tools and methods to encourage the co-creation and management of new ideas, which if developed through Service Design projects, could potentially improve dementia care services, in care homes run by the Order of St John Charity Trust.

The immerse day workshop is a stage of the full PSbyD design support programme, which is an advisory service.