Delivering a Design Thinking session for Digital Transformation

Client Partners
International Financial Corporation (IFC)
  • Middle East and Africa
  • Empathy Interviews
  • Problem Definition
  • Ideation
  • Prototyping

The IFC, the private sector investment arm of the World Bank, wanted to bring its Digital Transformation course (called “DigiLab”) to its financial institution clients in the Middle East and Africa. After a competitive process, in early 2020, the IFC selected Digital Disruptions to provide the Design Thinking component of the course. After COVID-19 made in-country training unfeasible, the IFC decided to conduct the classes through videoconference.

Approach & Outcome

Since participants had varying degrees of exposure to design and innovation, Digital Disruptions decided to go in-depth on a handful of key themes in Design Thinking. We crafted the session so participants could conduct activities themselves through a mock case study. This method became even more critical as participants were learning remotely instead of in a classroom.

We complemented the teaching of key Design Thinking principles – empathy, ideation, prototyping, and testing – with nearly a dozen examples of the firm’s past projects. The participants benefited from seeing concrete examples of how the Design Thinking activities were put into action in a similar domain (financial services) and geographical context (emerging markets) as their own. Overall, the session gave the participants confidence that they could implement Design Thinking independently, even with limited resources and in a highly regulated sector.

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