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Systems understanding + Design = Innovation

Together with The Oslo School of Architecture and Design, Halogen now offers a practice oriented innovation program with Systems Oriented Design (SOD) as the main tool.

How can we secure common understanding of a problem in a complex situation with a high number of factors, occurring regardless of culture, language, and even across organisational and sectoral boundaries? How can we manage change successfully, faced with uncertainty and high risk?

Halogen and The Oslo School of Architecture and Design (AHO) now offers a practice oriented innovation program using Systems Oriented Design as the main tool. The module based learning program will include theory, reflection and real life practice that enable you to understand and practice Systems Oriented Design in your everyday work.

By working with a relevant case of your own choice, you’ll get practical experience in Systems Oriented Design and a solid theoretical foundation for taking action and handling complex problems.

What is systems oriented design?

In both public and private sector, new demands for efficiency, safety and quality makes systems grow both in size and complexity. At the same time, digitalisation lead to new forms of collaborations and information management, and sustainability goals force companies and organisations to understand the system they are a part of in a whole new way.

Systems oriented design is about understanding connections and totalities in excessive systems. The aim is to reveal the relevant problem definitions and create a better foundation for shaping good decisions and acting upon them. Swithcing between zooming out to get a holistic view, and zooming in to investigate the details, over and over again builds this foundation.

In a system that might consist of hundreds of employees, thousands of users and a jungle of stakeholders, it might be difficult to pinpoint exactly where a problem lies. We use visualisation to help make sense of this complexity. Mapping systems using so-called gigamaps enables us to facilitate conversations and discussions about issues and problems identified. This way we are enabled to attend to details and relations, and we get assistance in finding the critical points we need to do something about.

Systems oriented design is also about taking the user perspective and putting the human in the center. But there is little help in looking only at the people involved, if at the same time we don’t understand what roles economy, politics, safety, ethics, sustainability, regulations and technical aspects play. Systems oriented design is about understanding this totality and mapping out pain points and potential gains.

Read more about Systems Oriented Design.

Become more certain of what to change, when and how

The learning innovation program is facilitated by leading professionals and lecturers within systems oriented design, service design and innovation. As a result of the program, you will have new tools enabling you to relate to complex problems in a better fashion. You’ll be better at defining what problems you should handle in what order, and more certain in your priorities of what changes to create and how.


Please contact adrian.paulsen@halogen.no for an informal chat if you find this interesting.