‘Show me my place in the ILW puzzle’

We had a fantastic design workshop on Friday with service designers Snook to focus on innovation, learning, and the role that a central programme (ie ILW) plays in encouraging, supporting, and celebrating activity.


The room was full of people from different perspectives from students to academics to professional staff from across the University – schools to timetabling to support services.

Based on interviews with key stakeholders, Snook organised the afternoon around our needs and insights that have been surfacing.

We did a stakeholder wheel of those in the room and then created personas of those that weren’t present – disengaged students and academics, externals who might want to be involved, etc. These personas didn’t just include information relevant to ILW – but information relevant to the person to help create a better insight into their experiences  (they like skiing on the weekends, etc). These personas were useful when thinking about ideas, solutions, and barriers over the course of the afternoon to ensure everyone was represented in some capacity.

Based on their previous research, we then started to explore insights, barriers, and opportunities through a series of posters they created.


For example, a theme surfaced around the structure of ILW.  Those interviewed had said that ‘it feels very topdown’ and it might ‘be better if it
was more like a start-up weekend.’ Questions included: How does ILW sit within the University structure? How can we ensure the smooth operation of ILW across different schools and support collaboration accross the board?

Within this strand, barriers included: 

  • Collaborating with other schools is tricky
  • Schools all have separate systems

Opportunities were:

  • ILW could part funded by school co-ordinators
  • Get everyone together at the start, or even a few times for support
  • Volunteers to take on some co-ordinator responsibilities (like TED-X)
  • Combine similar events during ILW
  • Apply through school, rather than ILW

We worked our way through numerous posters addressing insights, meanwhile taking solutions and opportunities and making them into cards which the central ILW team can realise down the road.  The ideas were brilliant and so valuable!

We finished off the afternoon mapping the ILW journey through a more simplified version of the blueprint we did earlier in the month.  This was an ideal blueprint and to have the whole room discussing and pitching in ideas was so valuable.  This helped us explore how our solutions, suggestions and opportunities might fit into the ILW plan for 2016.

Watch this space for further follow up from the workshop.




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