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Introduction to Design Planning




Systems & Innovation

Credit Hours


Introduction to basic ideas, frameworks, and capabilities of innovation initiatives.

This course is short but intense, and instrumental for understanding the basic ideas, frameworks, and capabilities that modern design planning and innovation programs demand. If you believe that innovation is fundamentally about creativity, the term “innovation planning” appears to make no sense. This should be your very first clue that the obstacles to successful innovation live mostly in stupid assumptions and bad practices. At ID we believe we can get innovation to give up its secrets. This foundation course takes us on a brisk journey to connect ideas ranging from the business planning fundamentals to modern frontiers of design and innovation planning.

Learning Objectives

  • Expose students to the larger context of innovation and design’s unique abilities to lead in times of severe ambiguity. Emphasis on established and emerging frameworks to guide critical thinking.
  • Review basic tenants of innovation leadership in large-scale enterprises or wickedly complex problems.

Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate the application of theories and principles covered in class through developing a breakthrough platform of their own choosing with an emphasis on “lightweight design”—catalysts for effective innovation that are faster, smarter, and lower cost than ever before in history.
  • Using a real-world problem, demonstrate the ability to focus on and articulate, with clear arguments, specific innovations in the wake of big shifts—a very modern form of planning.

Format & Grading

This course blends digital lectures, in class discussions, and team challenges. Relevant readings are assigned and should be read in advance of class sessions. One-third of the grade will be based on weekly assignments and class participation. Another third will be from an assigned team project and presentation, plus the peer evaluation of your contributions as a team member. The final third will be a function of your contributions in class conversation. Overall, emphasis will be on demonstrated mastery of the material, along with its effective application, and your teamwork skills.

Enrollment Restrictions

No prerequisites. This course is open to all Institute of Design students.