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Sheng-Hung Lee1,2, Ziyuan Zhu3,6, John Rudnik2, Chaiwoo Lee2, Joseph F. Coughlin2, Olivier L. de Weck4, Jonathan Chapman5
1MIT Integrated Design & Management (IDM); 2MIT AgeLab; 3MIT Architecture (SMArchS); 4MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics and Engineering Systems; 5Carnegie Mellon University School of Design; 6MIT Urban Risk Lab
The intention of this study is to experiment with the modified design thinking process by leveraging the Funnel Model, a participatory research framework, to increase the opportunity for users to engage and co-create in the product design and development process. The design thinking process is not only about collaborating with trained designers and experts but also working with users and participants to satisfy their needs and to address their pain points. Incorporating the Funnel Model into the modified design thinking process enables designers to distill and integrate research insights into further workflow. The Funnel Model includes the four key steps: (i) Recruit Right Participants; (ii) Select Suitable Participatory Research Tools; (iii) Conduct Qualitative Interpretation; (iv) Distill Research Insights to integrate the voice from the users. In the study, the model was designed and applied to an in-home IoT product design project in the stage of define as an example. Rather than introducing a novel design research methodology, the Funnel Model is a participatory research framework incorporated and built on the design thinking process.