Developing a design thinking mindset: encouraging designerly ways in postgraduate business education

Lars Groeger, Jochen Schweitzer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Building innovation capability is a topic of vital interest to many organisations. In search of ways to build such capabilities, practitioners and educators have turned to design thinking (DT). However, while knowledge of DT processes and familiarity with its tools can be achieved relatively quickly, few educational programs foster a DT mindset. This exploratory study examines the effect of an experiential DT learning environment on the development of a DT mindset. We analyse the extent to which key attributes of a DT mindset are understood, evaluated, and assessed with regard to their practical value. We apply a student-centred approach and show that the general value and related challenges of learning a DT mindset are well understood. However, students perceive the importance and value of mindset attributes differently; in particular, their reflections provide a nuanced and interlinked view of different mindset attributes. We discuss the relevance of our findings and learning designs for imparting a DT mindset, and provide a framework for learning objectives and exemplary activities to teach and encourage designerly ways of thinking and doing in business education. We argue that a mindset that embodies DT can address deficits in business school education, better preparing students for future work.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDesign thinking in higher education
EditorsGavin Melles
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
Number of pages32
ISBN (Electronic)9789811557804
ISBN (Print)9789811557798
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2020

Publication series

NameDesign Science and Innovation
ISSN (Print)2509-5986
ISSN (Electronic)2509-5994


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