Open Design Studio for HKDI: Design Thinking Training, Hong Kong, China

‘How to age well in Hong Kong’ was the question posed by our collaborator, the Christian Family Service Centre (CFSC 基督教家庭服務中心). They wanted to engage the young-old population, those between 50 to 60 year of age, to join a new service development brainstorming session. As the director of HKDI DESIS Lab, I  conducted the Open Design Studio, a design thinking training course for the CFSC’s staff members. Here they were shown how to design and operate a community event where citizens could participate in the design of new ageing services.

On 25 Feb, over 60 young-old citizens came to HKDI to participate in two sessions, i.e. a morning session was from 9am to 12noon and an afternoon session was from 2pm to 5pm. Each three-hour session was divided into two parts. In the beginning, participants were put into groups, where they were guided to create “their own figure” and use it to introduce themselves to the group. We called it the “2017-now zone” session.

Then participants moved into the next zone where they entered the “2027-future zone” session. There were four design stations prototyping future scenarios of 50+ services for them to engage with:

  1. 50+ Job Centre where participants were asked to think what new career they want to try after retirement,
  2. 50+ Working Holiday Agency is about where they want to travel to and what are they going to do if the current working holiday programme is going to extend its age limit to 60-year-old,
  3. 50+ KOL (Key Opinion Leader) Station where they were offered an opportunity to act as KOLs of 50+ culture and express freely their opinions on the new lifestyle and
  4. 50+ ideas Café was a free space for participants to share their experience and expectations as young-old citizens.