Protected: Theoretical Foundations of
Design Thinking Part I: John E.
Arnold’s Creative Thinking
Theories

We differentiate between three editorial levels of stories:

1) Design thinking classics:
Case studies that are well-documented and widely known, which we include in our collection for the sake of completeness. If not stated otherwise there are compiled by our editors via desk research.

2) Normal cases:
Stories, which are less known and got collected and rewritten by our editors via desk research.

3) Stories with validated data:
These cases are based on first-hand empirical information that our editors received during their research.

Design thinking is acknowledged as a thriving innovation practice plus something more, something in the line of a deep understanding of innovation processes. At the same time, quite how and why design thinking works – in scientific terms – appeared an open question at first. Over recent years, empirical research has achieved great progress in illuminating the principles that make design thinking successful. Lately, the community began to explore an additional approach. Rather than setting up novel studies, investigations into the history of design thinking hold the promise of adding systematically to our comprehension of basic principles. This chapter makes a start in revisiting design thinking history with the aim of explicating scientific understandings that inform design thinking practices today. It offers a summary of creative thinking theories that were brought to Stanford Engineering in the 1950s by John E. Arnold.

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Image Sources

  • History of Design Thinking Collage: ThisIsDesignThinking.net

The Authors

Julia P. A. von Thienen, William J. Clancey, Giovanni E. Corazza and Christoph Meinel

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