User-Centered Design and Prototyping



Brown, Tim. "Design Thinking." Harvard Business Review Magazine, June 2008.

Scharmer, C. Otto. "Conversational Actions." Chapter 17 in Theory U: Leading From the Future As It Emerges. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler, 2009. ISBN: 9781576757635.

Video Clips

Cheek, Kristin Aldred. "Design Matters: A New Video From dMASS." January 5, 2011. dMASS.

Hagel III, John. "Collaborative Innovation and a Pull Economy." April 17, 2010. Edge Prespectives.

In-Class Practice

Training in Rapid-Cycle Prototyping at IDEO


  1. Watch the 2005 Stanford University commencement speech by Steve Jobs (included in the pre-reading section for the next class). Even if you have seen it already, watch it again. Perhaps the greatest entrepreneur on the planet speaks about the essence of his own leadership process. Then, think about how his key principles (e.g., love what you do; do what you love) apply to your life and your career—your journey forward.

  2. In week one you did an empathy walk with a stranger. This week conduct an empathy experience with a person you know very well: your partner or a good friend. The task is to listen to that person from level 4—to have a generative conversation with that person. Level 4 means that you do not see your partner/friend on the basis of his/her past actions, but in terms of her/his highest future possibility—as if she/he was a stranger that you don't yet know. Be creative. Create a context that makes it work. For example, you could watch the Steve Jobs speech together (16 mins.) and then have a generative conversation about it.

  3. Continue the "listening to your listening" reviews (3 mins. each evening). Over time, try to make your listening awareness more in real time (while you are listening to others). In principle, you can turn any human interaction into an empathy practice. Just make it a part of your "everyday vocabulary."

  4. Continue to conduct one or two 5-question conversations (see questions in the session 2 assignment). Again, modify or situate the questions as needed.

  5. Think about the IDEO experience and what you can transfer to your work and life from the process that we collectively enacted and used during our session last Thursday.