We are delighted to see many graduate and post-graduate students referencing and making use of NextD Geographies, a framework created in 2005 by Elizabeth Pastor and GK VanPatter to make sense of the design thinking community from a complexity scale perspective. For many, that sensemaking framework has become a useful tool in their efforts to better understand the present and future states of strategic design thinking.
Perhaps a little like song writers seeing their creations adapted and interpreted by others, we might not always agree with every rendition of NextD Geographies, but it is interesting to see the various interpretations and applications across disciplines, geographies, and generations..:-)
Among the currently adapting post-graduate students is Jordan J. Lloyd, working on his PhD at the University of Sheffield School of Architecture, and is focused on “design-led approaches to managing large scale transitions in complex adaptive systems.” Jordan seems to be “interested in ‘developing a design methodology that utilises common threads between complex adaptive systems, then applying them to complex entities such as cities.'”
Of course, for us, Adaptability, Resilience and Adaptive Capacity building are not new ideas, but rather long-standing themes found in Applied Creativity history as early as 1950. What is most interesting to us is to see these themes being adapted to and imported into the rethinking of design thinking, as it continues to scale. The challenges of Adaptability have stood the test of time and remain at the center of many team, organizational, and societal challenges still today. Adaptability continues to be adapted! Friends of Humantific will know that it is the next-generation mechanics of Adaptive Capacity that we teach in Humantific and NextD workshops.
Go here to view the original NextD Geographies models.
Humantific launched the NextDesign Leadership initiative in 2002 as a community sensemaking and changemaking experiment outside of our practice. At that time, we viewed the traditional model of design leadership as a burning platform. Much change was needed, but existing conditions were not fully understood. Making them understood was part of the early NextD mission. Numerous frameworks, including NextD Geographies, have been published on ISSUU, and remain available for viewing for free in the NextD Archive. Some of the NextD models have been widely republished around the world, including NextD Reality Check. We continue to utilize those frameworks as NextDesign Assessment Tools when viewing design programs, faculties, leadership teams, program strategies, consultancies, innovation capacities, geographic region focuses, media focuses, design thinking skill-building programs, etc. On design thinking related questions, NextD Geographies continues to be among the most useful tools in the NextD toolbox.