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The project starts with a strategic challenge as formulated by the client and ends with a prototype and business implementation plan. Within the project, four different phases could be identified. The first is related to a ‘scoping’ process in which the challenge formulated by the client is analyzed and reframed.

The second phase consists of typical design steps during which different design tools and methods are applied to arrive at a desirable product-service concept.

During the third phase, the team will work on this concept and develop it into a viable and feasible business proposition. At this point, the aim is to freeze the concept by market validations as well as detailed specifications.

In the final phase, the proposition will be prepared for handing over to the client. A business implementation plan and tangible prototype will be developed. Both elements need to be developed in a user-centered manner, this time considering the client employees as the users of the final deliverables.


In-House Design Team Experience at Unilever R&D.

In-House Design Team Experience at Actiforce

By the end of the course the student is able to:

  • Turn the interests and strategic goals of the company, and the interests of society and future users, into an integrated tentative business value proposition and associated prototype.
  • Apply IDE-design methods and techniques in real life business situations.
  • Explain the designer’s role in a corporate setting in terms of design content and design interacting with internal stakeholders.
  • Identify the knowledge and competencies of the team members and to blend them into a team that performs well.
  • Explain how they manage, organize and lead involved actors (and student team).
  • Look for relevant additional theories, tools and methods to resolve upcoming project challenges and situations.
  • Explain the organizational behavior of their client in respect to business innovation and the role of designerly / entrepreneurial behavior in this respect.
  • Substantiate what corporate entrepreneurship by design could do for (large) organizations.
  • Convince internal clients and internal stakeholders through persuasive pitching and writing.


Practical information

The course ID5655: In-house Design Team runs over a complete semester (Q1 + Q2 and Q3 + Q4). In order to participate, registration via the electronic applications system Osiris is compulsory.

Registration for MSc elective courses in the Fall, Quarter 1 and 2 can be made in (approximately) April. Registration for MSC elective courses in the Spring, Quarter 3 and 4, can be made in (approximately) November.

Exact registration periods and deadlines are communicated on the website.See for deadlines and details.

Lab Director
Frido  Smulders