GBUS 8459 Innovation and Design Experience


This course builds on the foundational work in design thinking contained in the FY curriculum’s IDEA class, and offers students the opportunity to deepen their understanding of the principles, methodology, and tools used in human-centered design by applying them in a semester-long project, working closely with a client organization that offers a real problem to solve. Innovation projects will aim to provide new market/user insights, deep-concept thinking, and hypothesis testing specific new concepts on innovation opportunities of significant strategic value to the client organization. Ideally, teams of three to five students will identify projects before the start of the course in January and undertake the project under the supervision of the course faculty member during spring terms 3 and 4. Course topics, class sessions, team meetings with clients’ project liaisons, and project work will be structured and sequenced as a practicum in which each student team applies the course concepts and tools to design and build new business ideas and models for its client organization. At the conclusion of the course, each team will present its plans to both faculty and clients.


Academic Course Objectives


·         Deepen knowledge of human-centered design approaches and tools that enhance organizational innovation activities, whether in the area of market impact, value creation, speed, or efficiency

·         Expand students’ thinking about corporate design and innovation beyond the design and development of new products to other fundamental sources of value creation

·         Strengthen students’ individual and collaborative capabilities to develop market/user needs, create sound concept hypotheses (business, product/service, market, systems, and technology), collect appropriate data, and develop an analytical confirmation or rejection of concepts in a real-world environment

·         Teach students to translate identified opportunities into actionable innovation possibilities and recommendations for their client organizations

·         Prepare a senior management “client report,” addressing the opportunity potential, concept analyses, business-model recommendations, and implementation challenges


Elements of the Course Grade


·         Individual contribution to course and team-collaboration abilities             33.3%

·         Individual report                                                                                        33.3%

·         Team deliverable (business plan)                                                               33.4%