For years I have been using methods and tooling from the (Service) Design Thinking world. I have written about it earlier on this blog about the theory etc. You can find some earlier attempts here and there.
What strikes me is the abundance of material out there. So I thought an attempt in some collecting tools and methodologies would be nice.

Related stories (in Dutch)

Service Design Thinking Challenges
De vijf eigenschappen van Service Design

As I am trying to get all the various sources of information on this one page I realize with the first two books that I am listing it really isn’t hardcore SDT maybe, but let’s expand the horizon a little then. The books by Osterwalder might not be precisely within the HCD realm, but they do posses a mindset needed to be able to understand innovation, business development and in my case being able to help and support (starting) entrepeneurs.

Tools / Toolboxes

The Field Guide to Human Centered Design
A beautiful designed toolkit from to download in PDF. But you can also buy it in hardcopy from the same site.

DIY (development impact and you) Toolkit
A web-based toolkit that you can download in various PDF formats and is based on a variety of questions on what you would like to accomplish. More like Jobs to Be done. For instance: I want to get to know the people I work with…
I want to look ahead…or I want to develop a clear plan….
Very useful, all the tools are related to eachother but also to be used seperately if you want to. Basically it is a menu that you can choose from to compose a complete traject.
I have used the templates myself for various workshops. What I really like about it is that you can print them in different A1 through A4 formats.

Collective Action Toolkit by frog
A global design company whose director I once met at Singularity U. I have not yet worked with this set, but came across it while researching this topic.
The Collective Action Toolbox (CAT) puts design-thinking tools in the hands of local change agents to transform communities.

You can download the CAT at their website when you leave a name and email adress.

Hyper Island Toolbox
An online resource with five different areas of interest. Energizers, Innovation, Self-leadership, Action and Team. You will find most HCD tooling in the innovation category. They also have quite an extensive training program and will contact you when you look around at their site. I believe they have a great old prison type building as their location break out in Sweden. Read their corporate story over their first location here.

What can you say about this site and organization. David Kelly is I think considered to be the ‘inventor’ of the framing around Design Thinking. If you are not getting enthusiastic when you watch these videos on their site I don’t know what will… 😉
An Amsterdam based group of Design Thinkers in 18 different countries. From their website:
Design Thinking is a mindset to develop and deliver innovative ideas, change and solutions to complicated problems. It is an activity-based process with a strong emphasis on teamwork and co-creation. Our mission is to provide space and time for teams and individuals to be inspired and challenged, to ‘learn-by-doing’ and strengthen their ability for creative problem solving and help organizations build the necessary environment and mind-set.
I have worked with founders Arne and Tim on several occasions to develop what we called a pressure cooker patient journey for chain related healthcare issues. Very pleased with that result in 2014/2015.

The Design Council

An UK based council, established in 1944 to demonstrate the value of industrial design in reviving postwar Britain, the Design Council is now an enterprising charity which works to improve people’s lives through the use of design
They have a lot of resources on their website.

PDF Innovation by Design
PDF Design for the Public Sector

Stanford Social Innovation Review

These websites all form a good source of SDT related material. Their blogs are easy to follow with a RSS feed so that makes for easy curation of the various information flows.


In no particular order a collection of books and/ or articles I have been reading over the last 5 years that might be of some use to you. The links refer to pages on where you can buy the books should you be interested.
These first two are maybe not so much in the HCD department but they have brought me a lot on the concept of business modelling and looking at various ways to the core of a problem or challenge. In that sense they can help you achieve a better mindset to be able to help entrepeneurs/start-ups in their business development efforts.


Business Model Generation, Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Peigneur.
Value Proposition Design, same authors.

Also very fond of the two books by professor Jeanne Liedtka ‘Designing for Growth” The serie offers a very practical, hands-on way to start working in the design thinking field. You also might want to consider their MOOC offering through the Darden School at the Virginia University. Four modules of 4-5 weeks video led training and website exercises gives you a very broad array of the playing field. Also their 10 step project guide is very useful to combine in your own way.

Hope these tools will help you in some way. Let me know if something is missing.