Where innovations go to die, and how to avoid it

talk – 35 min | Feb 8 – 11:50

There are many traps along the path of a team set to launch an innovative product or services. What can we do – as design practitioners and leaders – to avoid them? How can we set the conditions for success?

Our work as interaction designers has focused more and more often on defining and crafting innovative products and services; ones that win the hearts and minds of people, while creating a business advantage (commercial or social) for the organizations launching them. Our success rate in this field is what granted us ‘a place at in the boardroom’ in recent years. Still, too many of the initiatives we work on are shelved before – or immediately after launch. Too many of our projects fall in traps that hinder their chances of success.

Starting from my experience – lots of successful launches and lots of failures in 15 years of design – and analyzing a variety of case studies, this talk focuses on three moments in the design process where there are some of the most dangerous of these traps: the scoping and definition of an opportunity; the shaping of the product / service; the last mile to launch. It highlights what are the risks in these phases and how they can be prevented, or at least mitigated. It provides tips and advice to design leaders and practitioners alike, to help them launch products and services that can fully express the innovative potential. It formalizes new techniques and design approaches to add to our toolkit as designers in the boardroom.

About the speaker

Franco Papeschi

Franco Papeschi


I am a design and innovation leader. I’ve spent 15 years working – and having fun –working with design agencies, multi-national corporations, start-ups and non-profit organizations to create products that touch people’s hearts and minds.

As a Creative Director at frog in Shanghai, I help teams and clients translate insights from human-centered research into innovative concepts; I lead projects that transform these concepts into differentiating services and solutions. I help articulate the loose signals and trends in the design and technology sectors.

Prior to joining frog, I held design management positions at Education First, the Web Foundation, Vodafone.

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