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Presentation Concept Cars as a design-led futures technique

Presentation of the manuscript Mejia, J.R., Hultink, E.J., Pasman, G., Stappers, P.J. (2016). Concept Cars as a design-led futures technique. Proceedings of the 23rd Innovation and product development management conference, Glasgow.

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Presentation Concept Cars as a design-led futures technique

  1. 1. 1 CONCEPT CARS AS A DESIGN-LED FUTURES TECHNIQUE by Ricardo Mejia Sarmiento, Erik Jan Hultink, Gert Pasman, and Pieter Jan Stappers
  2. 2. 2 CONTENT 1. Futures Studies techniques (situation & complication) 2. The Design-led Futures techniques (opportunity) 3. The study (methods) 4. Our claims (discussion) 5. Take away message Q&A
  3. 3. 3 Innovation forces organizations to think about the future, which is far from easy.
  4. 4. 4 Because they need to be aware of the changes in - the business environment - the behaviors of customers, competitors, and suppliers. (Van der Duin, 2006)
  5. 5. 5 FUTURES STUDIES The techniques guiding those explorations are named futures studies, which Hines (2016) describes as modes of thinking, mapping and influencing the future.
  6. 6. 6 2 Making plans and communicating those plans 3 Learning from this experience 1 Identifying opportunities and risks These techniques help companies
  7. 7. 7 MAPPING FUTURES STUDIES TECHNIQUES We used the Three Approaches to Making Decisions by Mintzberg & Westley (2001) to map the Futures Studies.
  8. 8. 8 MAPPING FUTURES STUDIES TECHNIQUES ● Thinking first, which is a verbal approach that relies on facts. ● Seeing first that is visual and based on ideas. ● Doing first, which is visceral and based on experiences. THREE APPROACHES TO MAKING DECISIONS (Mintzberg & Westley, 2001)
  9. 9. 9 MAPPING FUTURES STUDIES TECHNIQUES From short-term (in the small circle) to long-term (in the large circle). TIME-HORIZONS (Eisenhart & Brown, 1997)
  10. 10. 10 MANAGERIAL FUTURES STUDIES They are thinking first -verbal- approaches that relies on facts. MANAGERIAL FUTURES TECHNIQUES
  11. 11. 11 e.g. TECHNOLOGY ROADMAPING Technology road-mapping is “a process to think and analyze the market, product, and technology conditions [to] elaborate on a plan” (Simonse, Buijs and Hultink, 2015). Albright and Kappel (2003)
  12. 12. 12 e.g. FUTURE SCENARIOS Future Scenarios are “scenarios that describe consistent and plausible futures for the company” (Van Notten, 2006).
  13. 13. 13 However, managerial techniques have some limitations - Top-down processes - Involve only top-managers - Resource and time-consuming - Complex and abstract outcomes - Difficult to communicate and implement
  14. 14. 14 DESIGN-LED FUTURES STUDIES - Intuitive and action oriented. - Have a strong emphasis on communication. - Integrate the Three approaches to making decisions (Sanders & Stappers, 2012). DESIGN-LED FUTURES TECHNIQUES
  15. 15. 15 e.g. DESIGN FICTIONS Design Fictions is a technique to develop “micro futures- studies [that focus] on the everyday life, its short-term evolutions, and the standard objects or services that might fill these possible futures” (Girardin, 2015) Superflux (2014)
  16. 16. 16 e.g. CONCEPT CARS This Concept Car was defined as “the first car built by a mass manufacturer for the sole purpose of determining the public's reaction to the new ideas” (Edsall, 2003). It turned the company from an engineering-oriented organization into a design-oriented one. Buick Y-Job, designed in 1938 by Harley Earl.
  17. 17. 17 Although Concept Cars are broadly recognized as an interesting phenomenon, little academic work has been conducted on them. Innovation Management & Futures Studies
  18. 18. 18 CONCEPT CARS AS BRANDING EXERCISES - Concept Cars create a brand identity within the company, and outside they enhance the brand image (Roscam Abbing, 2010). - Concept Cars present and visualize the company’s visions of future design and technology trends (Backman and Börjesson, 2006). - Concept Cars establish coherent and unified design outputs of the different ideas and products lines (Evans, 2011).
  19. 19. 19 CONCEPT CARS, THE DESIGN PROCESS - The process of designing a Concept Car is much shorter that a commercial car (Berlitz and Huhn, 2005). - It focuses on communication. The company presents the Concept Car at a motor show to the media: newspapers, TV, and radio (Lv & Lu, 2012), experts and customers (Berlitz & Huhn, 2005), and the general public.
  20. 20. 20 This paper aims to add to the literature on Innovation Management by uncovering the key features that distinguish Concept Cars as a futures technique.
  21. 21. 21 SAY Te n s e m i - s t r u c t u r e d interviews with experts in -automotive- design. Purpose, Outcomes, and Process. MIXED METHOD
  22. 22. 22Page DO Observations at the 85th International Motor-Show and Accessories in Geneva. Outcomes. MIXED METHOD
  23. 23. 23 MIXED METHOD MAKE A multiple-case analysis to compare three prototypical examples of the different types of Concept Cars. Purpose, Outcomes, and Process.
  24. 24. 24 Your Concept Car by Volvo, 2004
  25. 25. 25 Citröen-Lacoste Concept Car by Citröen and Lacoste, 2010
  26. 26. 26 Mercedes-Benz F 015 Luxury in Motion by Daimler AG, 2015
  27. 27. 27 DISCUSSION More than beautiful show cars, Concept Cars are used to study, map, and envision -an image of- the future. This vision moves from the future back to the present and supports companies* in making decisions and mapping innovation. * Automotive manufacturers Suppliers Car design agencies
  28. 28. 28 DISCUSSION Managerial futures techniques are confidential maps for the future of innovation, which follow a thinking-first process and end in abstract outcome that targets specialized audience… & Concept Cars focus on (1) innovation and communication, following (2) a design-led process and ending in (3) an open, striking and experienceable outcome.
  29. 29. 29 INNOVATION Concept Cars increase the innovation capabilities: - Companies foresee the future exploring a plausible and preferable future. - Companies experiment with technologies and explore design languages. COMMUNICATION - Companies share a concrete image of the future that is easy to understand for a broad audience*. - Stimulates conversations that generate ideas about the company’s future at different levels**. - Different people, inside and outside the company, align their agendas. *Internal (workers, & suppliers) & External (media & general public). **Company’s strategy, its products, etc. Concept Cars focus on innovation & communication
  30. 30. 30 A hands-on technique that embrace thinking, seeing, and doing approaches to making decisions. - [Research] Designers investigate and analyze context factors. - [Visual synthesis] Designers make sketches and illustrations to produce ideas about the concept and the context. - [Prototyping] Designers make prototypes at different scales and resolutions, sharing the idea with others. - [Storytelling] Designers create a narrative to communicate the artifact through videos and other materials. All these activities are necessary to experiment simultaneously with technology and styling. Concept Cars follow a design-led process
  32. 32. 32 SHORT-TERM CONCEPT CARS Are made to announce and incorporate modifications into specific commercial vehicles, which are launched one year after the concepts are presented. The concepts examine probable futures, extrapolating the current trends and knowledge into a new car model.
  33. 33. 33 MEDIUM-TERM CONCEPT CARS Are designed to inspire the addition of new categories of automobiles, which could be developed between five to ten years after the concepts are presented. These concepts push the boundaries between the probable and the plausible future, incorporating current knowledge and present and new trends.
  34. 34. 34 LONG-TERM CONCEPT CARS (VISION CONCEPTS) Are produced to experiment with cars that are built from scratch, exploring at least fifteen years ahead. These concepts propose new styling, ahead from the lines of the current production vehicles, and investigate novel technologies, even some of them that are not necessarily proved. They are linked to the preferable future. It is selected based on the values of the brand and its strategic projections.
  35. 35. 35 CONCEPT CARS AS OUTCOMES Concept Cars are “tangible and materialized futures” that are easy to understand for the majority of people. The artifacts are embodied by: - Full-size prototypes that enable people to experience the car as real as possible. - Supporting materials (texts, visuals, and videos) that present the interaction between users and the car in a -future- contexts.
  36. 36. 36 CONCEPT CARS AS OUTCOMES These -physical and narrative- manifestations of a fake -futuristic- vehicle, are designed to attract and evoke emotions in diverse people.
  37. 37. 37 CONCEPT CARS LIMITATIONS It is a resource intensive technique (team, money, and time). It presents a singular outcome, hiding the opportunities offered by other futures.
  38. 38. 38 TAKE AWAY MESSAGE Innovation managers can use Concept Cars as an alternative futures technique or as a ‘vehicle’ to complement other futures method. Concept Cars can strengthen the innovation in diverse companies regardless of whether they are in other branches of the industry or whether they are in B2B or B2C businesses. ----- - It is a design-led futures technique that incorporate visual synthesis, prototyping, and storytelling. - It ends in a concrete artifact presented as a tangible future through physical and narrative manifestations.
  39. 39. 39 NEXT We will further investigate their design process to explore the way to use Concept Cars in other branches of the industry.
  40. 40. 40 THANKS Ricardo Mejia Sarmiento www.pktweb.com J.R.MejiaSarmiento@tudelft.nl