DAY 3 - Setting up a Design Project: Stakeholders

Students pinpoint their direct and indirect stakeholders including their assets, needs, and interests.

Students will prepare questions and make plans to connect with and interview codesigner/stakeholders.


Obj 2: Identifying stakeholders and addressing stakeholders assets/ needs/culture/history  in the co-design process

Obj 3: Set up a co-design project
ie. Establishing goals for the project, identify stakeholders, recognizing project constraints

Opening Activity

Guiding Questions: How does secondary research help inform your problem statement and your HMW question?

Check-In/Community Profile and Asset Map Discussion: (20 MIN)

  1. Each group will take turns briefly sharing their overall findings (Community Profile etc.) and secondary research experience with the class.
  2. Students will discuss how this information has expanded their initial view of the problem statement and HMW questions.
    • Ie. Summarize demographic information of community, variety of Community Assets, highlighting work already being done to address problem statements etc.
    • Conversation should lead to: How do we use this newfound information to guide our design project set up?

Purpose: Students will gain practice in researching and documenting the strengths and resources of the communities they will be collaborating with during the co-design process.

Key Questions & Topics

How do I understand and connect with the people I am designing with?

Stakeholder Mapping
Who are the “end-users” of this design? Who are the other stakeholders who have interest and influence?

Creating an environment where people participate time/energy to the project according to their interests and needs + setting memorandums of understanding (MOUs) with stakeholders.

Intentional and Honest Relationship Building
communication and collaboration with a variety of stakeholders (including challenges.)

Balancing personal identity and identity as part of an institution.

Technology and social protocols
How to email busy people and importance of networks.

Core Activity

Guiding Question: Who are the people we are designing with?

Identifying stakeholders and thinking about
stakeholder dynamics: (25 MIN)

  1. Utilizing their secondary research (Community Profile and Asset Maps) and previous Institute readings/articles, students will have 10 MIN within break out groups to identify the stakeholders most impacted by their stated problem statement as well as adjacent stakeholders + institutions with influence or interest in the project.
  2. Once students return from breakout groups, groups will take turns placing their selected stakeholders onto the Stakeholder Map.
    • Groups should be prepared to explain why they chose to include a specific stakeholder and the location they placed them within the stakeholder map.
    • Instructor should ask students to reflect on stakeholders and their distribution of power in regards to problem scope.

Miro Link to Day 3 Stakeholder Activity.

Link to a bit more reading on Stakeholders and their use: DesignThinkers Group | USA. “Stakeholder Mapping: Simple, Yet Powerful,” October 2, 2018.

Purpose: Students will become more aware of pressing issues affecting Boston and its various communities. Students will practice Design Fundamentals and learn the importance of considering the varied interests and values of multiple stakeholders in a group.

Closing Activity (Reflection & Evaluation)

Guiding Questions: What tools can I use to understand and connect with the people I am designing with?

Understanding and Connecting with Stakeholder Groups: (45-50 MIN)

  1. After students complete the Stakeholder Map Activity as a class, each pre-established student group will choose a focus stakeholder group they would like to codesign with.
  2. Students will have 25 minutes to begin brainstorming ideas for their plan to engage with their chosen stakeholder groups ie. their “Stakeholder Engagement Plan.”
    • Students will be given a Guiding Document that will help groups brainstorm how to connect with their target stakeholder/codesigner.
    • For additional resources, the guiding document will also have a link to the Ideo Methods Website. Students will be instructed to look through different activities, specifically Methods filtered by Question where they find methods specific to the question “What tools can I use to understand people.”
  3. After 25 minutes, groups will return from breakout groups and share their initial Stakeholder Engagement Plan. Groups will have the last portion of the class to workshop their plans with instructor and fellow groups.
    • Instructor can bring in ideal vs. realities of working with busy/various stakeholders ie. communication, how to email busy people, time- frames

Purpose: Students work on contextualizing their focus problem statement and its effects across various greater Boston communities. Students begin the codesign process by researching how to engage effectively and respectfully with their target stakeholders.

Post Session Work

  • Group Work: Students will complete their “Stakeholder Engagement Plan.” Deliverables will be dependent on the groups' plan. Regardless of their engagement plan, each group must prepare to “interview” stakeholders, the group's deliverable will be crafting interview questions for their stakeholder group and follow up on how they will contact stakeholders for interviews.
  • If a group plans to “table at a local community center,” the group's plan will entail researching/ contacting local partner organizations, and preparing information they will use when communicating with target stakeholders.