Generating Ideas to Solve Childhood Obesity

In our public workshops, we often invite participants to challenge the group with a real-world problem from their daily lives, to stress-test our unique toolbox of creative techniques.

At a recent UX design workshop, a participant asked us to tackle the problem of childhood obesity in the US. The mock client was a senior UX designer who worked for a healthcare organization committed to addressing this issue. This was a fascinating challenge to tackle with a group of 23 random designers, in just over an hour’s time. Despite the sheer scale of the question, everyone was eager to give it a go.

After the participant outlined the challenge, we moderated a group brainstorm and refinement session that included individual reflection and generation time, as well as breakout and full group dialogues. To start, everyone documented their ideas quickly on index cards. We then discussed the ideas in groups, refining, expanding and editing. The result: 23 people came up with 50 genuinely viable education, nutrition, motivation and weight-loss program ideas in about 45 minutes.

Our mock client was so inspired by these offerings, she took the groups’ ideas back to her health initiative committee, to inspire further dialogue in-house. The best ideas had a good chance of being funded.

“I want to take all these cards back to my office! Can I have them? This has been more productive than 3 months of committee meetings.”