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Unit information: Team Challenges 2: Client Led Briefs in 2020/21

Unit name Team Challenges 2: Client Led Briefs
Unit code INOVM0009
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Ms. Padley
Open unit status Not open

Team Challenges 1 - Working with difference



School/department Centre for Innovation
Faculty Faculty of Arts


Working with our wide network of social, industrial and commercial partners, we will present student teams with real-life challenges to tackle by means of group projects. The relevant partners for each project will provide mentors and coaches to work alongside academics for each student project team. Students will work in an agile manner in groups to research, prototype, and demonstrate proof of concept, for innovative solutions to address their client’s needs. This will be based on the use of agile development which processes foster better collaboration, innovation, and results. Traditionally used solely for software projects, this is now recognised as a successful methodology to transform entire innovation business management and processes. This unit will require students to generate and sift through ideas, seek out and create appropriate proof of concepts, and develop robust and flexible methods of working in an iterative, agile and responsive manner.

The aims of this unit are:
● To advance students abilities to generate ideas and solutions that will address the clients’ needs, both individually and collaboratively, and provide opportunities for the discovery solutions;
● To generate an inventive space where students can work collaboratively to make smart design decisions, prototypes, and demonstrate proofs of concept that address the needs of their client;
● To introduce key theories relating to undertaking an agile process to help solve the client’s problems;
● To advance students knowledge and understanding of key theories and methods to understand how to build participatory relations with those for whom innovators are designing;
● To advance students critical reflection of their own innovative (co-)design and transdisciplinary group practices;
● To develop communication, presentation and collaboration skills with a real-world client.

Intended learning outcomes

Students successfully completing the unit will be able to:
● Communicate effectively with a real world client.
● Investigate, interpret and think creatively about a client-led problem.
● Reiterate and critique different designs solutions in an agile manner, communicating and evaluating the potential of different design solutions to realise those solutions most likely to succeed.
● Demonstrate different design solutions with the client.
● Implement, given the resource profiles available to the team and client, a chosen solution through to proof of concept through an iterative agile process, advancing the student’s rapid prototyping skills.
● Reflect critically on their group work and on the process of designing for a real world client.

Teaching details

Lectures and studio based learning. The client led projects are intended to promote self-directed and collaborative learning, under guidance of an academic supervisor(s) (plus any relevant external third-parties). Students will be advised to set up their own spaces online for group collaboration.

Assessment Details

100% coursework
Students will undertake a client led brief in teams or as individuals working in action learning sets. There will be regular peer and academic feedback over the commencement of the client led project briefs.

● 60 % - Group or individual presentation and report documenting the innovation process for the client project brief, including a proof of concept or prototype for the design solution.
o ILO 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5
● 40% - A single individual reflective 2000 word critique on the process of innovation with the client.
o ILO 2, 3, 5 & 6

Reading and References

● Sustainagility: How Smart Innovation and Agile Companies will Help Protect our Future, Patrick Dixon and Johan Gorecki, 978-0749460839, 2010
● Agile Portfolio Management, Jochen Krebs, 978-0735625679, 2008
● Customer Experience 3.0: High-Profit Strategies in the Age of Techno Service, John Goodman, 978-0814433881, 2014
● The Ten Principles Behind Great Customer Experiences, Matt Watkinson, 978-0273775089, 2012