Tools

Inclusive Systemic Design

DisSci:gn Lab’s inclusive systemic design approach consists of 12 tools for developing and facilitating participatory processes for reducing the inequity and magnitude of disaster risk, impacts, and recovery. These tools are modular (mix and match) process models. Use them for converging on an inclusive understanding of a wicked disaster problem and iteratively (but never permanently) solving the problem using creative framings. Each tool consists of four objectives to guide your process development. Conduct one or more activities to meet each objective. Here are some worksheets and facilitation guides you can use to create activities or run workshops. Scroll down to learn about each tool. To learn even more, scroll through our training slides.

Inclusive Systemic Design Process

Problem Space Tools: Converge and Comprehend

Use these tools to assess the roots of a wicked disaster problem, discover what others know about it, cast new participants or facilitators, align interests and resources, review diverse knowledge sources, and represent the relationships across knowledge communities. Typically, converging and comprehending starts with [Re]Assess and end with [Re]Present. [Re]peating tools improves reflection, awareness, inclusion, belonging, synthesis, and shared understanding.

[Re]Assess

[Re]Assess

[Re]Assess the roots, stakeholders, and implications of the problem situation. Inventory past (lack of) successes. Identify tensions of research and practice.

[Re]Discover

[Re]Discover

[Re]Discover and activate primary observations, opinions, experiences, needs, and expectations of included and excluded stakeholders and experts.

[Re]Cast

[Re]Cast

[Re]Cast the field of included stakeholders and experts. Define what inclusion means for converging to and integrating a solution. Outline how those included will be afforded participation.

[Re]Align

[Re]Align

[Re]Align participants around a shared understanding of individual values, goals, and interests for the problem situation, as well as their disparate ways of knowing and working.

[Re]View

[Re]View

[Re]View and activate relevant interdisciplinary research literature, best practices, operational procedures, case studies, and other evidentiary sources from research and practice.

[Re]Present

[Re]Present

[Re]Present the complex system of the problem situation based on synthesis of evidence from [Re]Assess, [Re]Discover, and [Re]View in a meaningful, interpretable way for all participants.

Solution Space Tools: Formulate and Create

Use these tools to profoundly frame a wicked disaster problem, interpret transformative opportunities from those frames, generate integrative concepts for change, shape prototypes of new approaches, resolve untested assumptions, and integrate change strategies. Typically, formulating and creating starts with [Re]Frame and ends with [Re]Integrate. [Re]peating tools shifts perceptions, opportunities, ideas, intentions, assumptions, and strategies.

[Re]Frame

[Re]Frame

[Re]Frame the disciplinary perceptions and definition of the problem with a disciplinary-neutral lens. Create evocative ways of seeing the problem that may lead to new solutions.

[Re]Interpret

[Re]Interpret

[Re]Interpret the problem definition, goals, evidence, and stakeholder needs using creative, discipline-agnostic framings to find patterns and themes that reveal new solution opportunities.

[Re]Generate

[Re]Generate

[Re]Generate and select bold transdisciplinary, evidence- based, and competing concepts to inform solutions to prototype and test.

[Re]Shape

[Re]Shape

[Re]Shape concept-based prototypes (sketches, mockups, roleplays, etc.) using integrative approaches in order to test the assumptions and benefits of proposed solutions.

[Re]Solve

[Re]Solve

[Re]Solve which assumptions and hypotheses embedded in the prototypes are valid through rapid, iterative testing.

[Re]Integrate

[Re]Integrate

[Re]Integrate the tested prototype(s) strategically to be compatible with relevant institutional and organizational cultures, structures, workflows, decision processes, and resources.

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