As any designer, it’s my job to solve "wicked" problems. In order to do so, I use a design process that defines every journey I take to solve such problems.
The first phase of the process is to understanding the problem: this may involves engaging and empathizing with the people involved to better understand their experiences and motivations, as well as immersing in the environment aiming to gain a deeper personal understanding of the issues involved. The problem is broken down into smaller subproblems, then resolution priorities are set.
In the second phase, information are firstly gathered, involving experts if required, to find out more about the area of concern, than are analised;
the aim is to synthesize them in order to define the core problems.
The third phase is the one where ideas are generated; in this state I usually draw down most of the ideas and solutions that I think, to support visually my thought process.
The fourth phase is the Selection one, where the best or most suitable solution created are selected.
In the fifth phase, prototypes of the possible solutions are developed and tested: techniques, materials, overall quality, each part of the solution is questioned and reconsidered. If necessary even going back to the creativity stage.
In the sixth phase, the selected solution is developed in all of its part,
and a proper almost-done prototype is created.