The Improvising Design site and improv-design blog are maintained by Dr. Susan Gasson, Associate Professor of Information Science & Technology at Drexel University, Philadelphia PA.  It is driven by a fascination with how we approach the co-design of business and IT systems, especially how we solve wicked problems. Wicked problems consist of a series of interrelated problems. They cannot be defined objectively because how they are defined depends on the eye of the beholder (which issues, processes, technologies, and people are included and which are not). So we don’t know how to gauge design progress because we can’t define the design problem until we have solved it. Simple, isn’t it?
Wicked problems are human problems. Even though they tend to involve information technology, they are wicked because they are subjective. Get five people in a room and they will define at least 10 critical problems between them – all of which will be related in some way. My research interest lies in how we get those five people on the same page, to agree problems and design solutions, especially when these involve organizational learning, innovation and change.


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Author contact: sgasson@drexel.edu.

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