The practice and profession of strategic design is a

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The practice and profession of strategic design is a recent development and therefore poses new challenges and opportunities for design management. Designers, by their personal inclination, education and skill set, tend to have a set of preferences, values, tools and behaviours that closely match requirements of innovation , says Bettina von Stamm. And yet, she finds that the role of design in innovation continues to be hampered in today s businesses because of a lack of shared
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understanding, the fact that many people in businesses remain unaware about their design roles, communication issues and educational differences. In her exploration of The Role of Design in Innovation: A Status Report , she presents lessons from five case studies that illustrate these problems and that also show how the situation could be improved. To unfold its role in innovation, she concludes, design has to become part of the organizational fabric. The strategic role of design in marketing is closely linked with the business decisions of an organization, observes Margaret Bruce in Connecting Marketing and Design . Decisions to enter a new market, to increase market share, or to merge with another company represent strategic changes that initiate investment in design. However, Bruce finds that for design to have a strategic function within the company can require significant organizational changes. In her view, marketing and design have a key role here because they are close to consumers. This means that marketing and design professionals are at the forefront of change and can so contribute to sustainable and competitive businesses. Measuring and Evaluating Design Like fine art and sometimes architecture, design suffers from being in that category of activities which everybody thinks he can do. This, of course, is not so. But even if it were, design costs money because, whether it is easy or not, it takes time and it needs space. And time and space mean money. (Hughes-Stanton 1967) Researchers still seek answers to what the cost of design is and what it contributes to the bottom line. As a result, different ways of measuring and evaluating are being proposed. We include two chapters that approach this problem from two different perspectives. Editorial Introduction 185 Tore Kristensen and Gorm Gabrielsen seek to deliver evidence for the old claim that good design also translates into good business . In Design Economy Value Creation and Profitability , they present the findings of a quantitative study that they conducted with a random sample of twenty-five large Danish companies. The study served to test three hypotheses. Hypothesis one states that the quality of product design is positively covaried with financial performance. Hypothesis two claims that logo design is associated with financial performance. Hypothesis three finally argues that a product s Web design positively covaried with the financial performance of a product. Their findings indicate that both product and logo design improve business.
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