Principles for Digital Development

Design with people

Good design starts and ends with people that will manage, use, and ideally benefit from a given digital initiative. 

To design with people means to invite those who will use or be affected by a given technology policy, solution, or system to lead or otherwise meaningfully participate in the design of those initiatives.

In all cases, there will be more than one group of relevant stakeholders (including those who ideally benefit from the initiative and those who will maintain/administer the initiative), each of whom need to participate and engage in the initial design phase and in subsequent iterations. The specific stakeholders will need to be defined separately for each initiative.

Initiatives can encourage meaningful participation by creating opportunities for people to innovate on top of products and services; establishing avenues for feedback and redressal that are regularly monitored and addressed; and committing to agile methods that allow for continual improvement.

Otherwise, initiatives are unlikely to gain trust of and adoption of the communities they seek to reach.