Analysis of factors that influence adoption of design thinking innovation approach: a case of technology hubs in Nairobi
Chuaga, Catherine Wanjiru
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Design thinking Innovation is very important for technological hubs to be sustainable in this 21st century. Some of the challenges associated with the traditional innovation approaches include; product centered issues because users’ needs are poorly understood and a lot of assumptions are made to develop a product. As a result, products were not well tested and verified against the expected users’ needs. Industries are adopting design thinking innovation since it has the user at the centre of product and service innovation. The purpose of the proposed study was to analyze the factors that influence the adoption of design thinking innovation approach in technology hubs in Nairobi. The research design adopted by the study was descriptive. The sample size for the study was 144 respondents who were selected using simple random sampling. Questionnaire and interview guide were used in collecting primary data. Administration of the questionnaires to the respondents was done by the researcher. The researcher also interviewed the respondents where more information was required. End user representative’s data was also collected using interview guides. Open-ended questions were analyzed using conceptual content analysis. Descriptive statistics were used in analyzing quantitative data including means, standard deviations, frequencies and percentages. The data was presented in form of tables, pie charts and 2-D and 3-D charts. The study found that design team significantly and positively relate with adoption of design thinking innovation approach. The study also found that design thinking process and adoption of design thinking innovation approach are significantly and positively related. The study also found that creative design environment and adoption of design thinking innovation approach are significantly and positively related. The study recommends that teams should apply collaborative form of work relations when integrating design thinking and should also ensure that their teams comprise of team members from various disciplines; this will ensure that the teams can effectively brainstorm, share and test ideas. Organizations should adopt the five steps of design thinking process which are; Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype and Test as an innovation approach. This design thinking process improves the quality of products and solutions developed, reduce the time taken to develop products and most importantly increases customer loyalty and satisfaction. Organizations should also ensure that the design environment is creative because it acts as motivation to the employees and encourages collaborative and creative work, and it also encourages social interaction with the rest of the team members. This will encourage creation of innovation.