News @ JSI

JSI Hosts Interactive Workshop on Human Centered Design

April 3, 2017

On March 30, 2017, representatives from the Maternal and Child Survival Program (MCSP), Planned Parenthood Global (PPG), Vecna Cares Charitable Trust, and JSI facilitated an interactive workshop, giving participants the opportunity to practice human-centered design (HCD) methods in a dynamic setting. 

  • Paul Amendola, executive director of Vecna Cares Charitable Trust  taught participants how to use the mHealth Ideation Tool, which is used at the beginning of a project to generate information and communication technology (ICT) ideas with users. It was developed through the lessons learned from dozens of mHealth projects and keeps users at the center of decision-making from the outset.
  • Lauren Spigel, monitoring and evaluation expert with MCSP, facilitated an activity using sketch cards, giving participants the opportunity to see sketch cards in action. Sketch cards are cards with relevant images on them and can be used to build consensus with your users, outline workflows, and identify pain points in a system.
  • Maria Alzuru, global mobile product manager at Planned Parenthood Global, led one-on-one usability tests to demonstrate user experience methodologies. Prototyping and testing potential solutions can determine the effectiveness, satisfaction, and overall usability of a product before investing resources in implementation.
Following the design sprint activity, JSI staff members who have experience studying and implementing design processes within global health programs shared their experiences and answered questions in an informal panel format. JSI panelists included Anne LaFond, director of the Center for Health Monitoring and Evaluation, and Soumya Alva, monitoring and evaluation expert  from the Innovations for MNCH Initiative, Kristen Devlin, and Tanvi Pandit-Rajani from Advancing Partners and Communities

HCD is both a process and a mindset that puts users at the center of program and design decisions. While HCD is a hot topic of discussion among the digital health community, hands-on experience is the best way to build the self-efficacy necessary to implement HCD methods. This workshop was designed to expose participants to a series of participatory, interactive methods that can be used to co-design a digital health tool with users. Participants learning objectives included: 
  • Expose participants to HCD methods that can be used throughout the lifespan of a digital health project, putting users at the center of design decisions.
  • Learn how to use the mHealth Ideation Tool to brainstorm ICT solutions with user
  • Understand how to use creative methods, such as collaging and drawing, to answer key contextual questions that will help meet the needs of users
  • Practice facilitating discussions using sketch cards to outline a workflow, prioritize user needs, or identify pain points in a digital health system.
  • Gain hands-on experience building prototypes to test solutions with users prior to implementation.
  • Encourage participants to think critically about how HCD methods can be applied to their work.
  • Share ideas, lessons learned and experiences using HCD methods in diverse settings.
JSI uses human-centered design across our technical areas of expertise to improve data use and increase the uptake of new technologies and behaviors.