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Should We Mothball our Design Thinking Books?

August 15, 2011

Whether or not Business Week’s Bruce Nussbaum’s “Creative Intelligence,” or “Creativity Quotient” (CQ) catches on, before we put the concept of design thinking, once and for all, to rest,

Each of us has to ask him- or her-self: Is it time to put our Design Thinking books in storage?

In answering this question, a great deal depends on where you are coming from and what you hope to gain from the read.

Irrespective of where your allegiances align, in terms of design strategy, much can still be gained by reading any of these books.

Recognizing that some books that make the cut may be excellent sources for design thinking without mentioning the term itself, they may also serve as helpful guides for careers in design strategy.

For me, personally, I have benefitted from so many of the books listed below.

Vicariously experience client and team meetings by reading the cases, stories and anecdotes.

Books allow us to gain knowledge and, when digested and put to use, wisdom without all of the sweat.

Coupled with learning the terms and concepts, you attain higher level thinking required of all strategists.

These books are great to have in your arsenal, especially when responding to those who demand from your design interventions proof of future performance and success.

The Opposable Mind by Roger Martin

Design Thinking by Nigel Cross

The Art of Innovation by Tom Kelley

The Ten Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelley

Glimmer: How Design can transform your life and maybe even the world by Warren Berger

A Fine Line: How Design Strategies Are Shaping the Future of Business by Hartmut Esslinger

The Design of Business – Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage by Roger Martin

The Universal Principles of Design by Lidwell, Holder & Buttler

Change by Design by Tim Brown

The Designful Company by Marty Neumeier

The Brand Gap by Marty Neumeier

ZAG by Marty Neumeier

Design Thinking: Integrating Innovation, Customer Experience
and Brand Value by Thomas Lockwood

Thoery U by C. Otto Scharmer

Design for the Real World: Human Ecology and Social Change by Victor Papanek

Can you name a design thinking book that has earned its permanent place on your bookshelf?

One Comment leave one →
  1. randydeutsch permalink*
    August 15, 2011 10:27 am

    While not a book per se, you might also benefit from perusing back issues of Rotman Magazine. And for a summary of Roger Martin’s thinking on design thinking, check out his devotional on his website.

    Also fo interest is Innovation Workshop: Brand Strategy + Design Thinking = Transformation, DVD by Marty Neumeier.

    For a more thorough collection of books, articles, audio and videos – with links – see this blog post

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