Rory Sutherland

The Empathy Gap

Empathy is considered to be at the bedrock of good design. But what if how we’re thinking about empathy is wrong? Empathy is certainly having its moment. Anywhere you look for writing on design and innovation and you’ll likely find a big role for empathy. Designers are encouraged to empathize with their potential customers and …

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Strangling Innovation

Not even the best innovation team can escape bad systems. Without looking at your systems, innovation might just get suffocated. Halloween is full of frightful costumes, decorations, and performances but few things are more terrifying for innovators than systems that strangle our best efforts. What’s even scarier is that these systems might be living among …

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Marketing Metaphors of Meaning in Complexity

Marketing is largely about identity and stories about identity. Marketers want to influence what you do (choose, use, purchase, etc..) and how you experience what you do when you do it. To do this, they know the importance of design and the stories to accompany that design. Design, when done well, is partly about creating empathy with those who are to benefit from the products of design and the best products out there are ones that apply empathy and guide behaviour at the same time. Storytelling is the vehicle that links them together.

Contemplating Better Public Health: Perspective is Everything

How might we apply the lessons from cigarette use to mental health promotion? How might we design programs, spaces, places, and social conventions that promote the quiet contemplative acts that come from taking that cigarette break and offer potentially great value to tobacco users without creating harmful effects for others?

Engaging design, complexity and imagining the systems that influence them both might yield considerable insight into how we manage other public health problems and how we might better promote mental health in the protection of physical well-being.

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