Understanding Design > What Is Design?

The Design Process

Designers use their mindsets and skillsets to develop solutions to people’s needs that can be rapidly tested and refined. While each design area has a different way of working, the creative process of design is shared across specializations.

Skillset Process Mindset as stepping stones

The British Design Council developed the Double Diamond model to illustrate the shared elements across the design process. The Double Diamond reflects the two primary cycles of divergent and convergent thinking in the design process:

Double diamond Design process graphic

The diamond to the left represents the first cycle, which starts with discovering the challenges and needs of the people and systems one is designing for, and then converging on opportunities to overcome both challenges and needs. This cycle helps ensure that one is designing the right things.

The diamond to the right represents the second cycle, which ensures that one is designing things right by developing and testing ideas based on the opportunities identified in the first cycle, and then converging on and delivering a solution. The model emphasizes testing and iteration, which helps weed out bad ideas and prioritize effective, desirable and sustainable ideas.