Conference article

Mapping design capability of public service organisations: A tool for collaborative reflection

Yvonne Yeo
National University of Singapore, Singapore

Jung-Joo Lee
National University of Singapore, Singapore

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Published in: ServDes2018. Service Design Proof of Concept, Proceedings of the ServDes.2018 Conference, 18-20 June, Milano, Italy

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 150:43, p. 534-549

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Published: 2018-07-05

ISBN: 978-91-7685-237-8

ISSN: 1650-3686 (print), 1650-3740 (online)


While public service organisations nowadays strive to shift their mind-sets to be human-centred, collaborative and build in-house design capabilities, design as a growing strategic tool is not clearly understood among public officers. What exactly is design, what are its contributions and how to relate design practices to their everyday work are barriers to successfully embed design within their organisations. There are also limited facilitation tools to achieve a mutual understanding between designers and public officers during collaborative projects. This research introduces the development of a design capability mapping tool, with the aim of capturing and amplifying clarity around a public service organisation’s propensity and aptitude to embed design at various levels throughout the organisation. The tool has been tested with several government agencies in Singapore to help them identify their perceptions of design, resources and mind-sets to utilise design as a strategic tool, as well as misalignments in their understandings.


design capability, public sector, transformation, mapping


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