14 December 2007

Co-design and public services

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Demos Project
Demos, the UK think tank for everyday democracy, is starting a project on co-design and public services.

“Co-design has become an important tool in the effort to develop better relationships between people and the public services they need and want. It means putting the needs of service users foremost by using collaborative principles in the design of a service. […]

There is a real acknowledgement that by getting users, designers and providers of services together, there can be significant improvements in how that service works and is experienced. But the practice of co-design is in danger of undermining the promising theory and rhetoric; there remain significant gaps between the aspirations and reality of user engagement in service development and design. Co-design is like spinach. Government knows its good for them – but they don’t always like it.

This project, in partnership with PriceWaterhouseCoopers, will focus on the state of play in co-design work internationally and in the UK, and it will seek to identify what it is that enables and prevents co-design from happening. By exploring the realities of co-design practice, the analysis will look to further explore how services really can, through co-design principles, be designed with user experiences and needs at their heart.”

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