Design teams – a participatory path to socially transformative innovation?

  • Malin Lindberg Luleå University of Technology
  • Maria Johansson Luleå University of Technology
  • Helena Österlind Klabböle konsult


This study investigates how a design team with researchers and participants from different parts and levels of an organisation may function as a participatory method for socially transformative innovation. The experiences gained by a design team in one of Sweden’s major forestry companies are examined through a participatory, single case study approach, in which researchers and employees jointly developed new insights and ideas. The results reveal that the design team functioned well in terms of channelling the participants’ expertise and experiences into innovative ideas, but less well as regards aligning the latter with the company’s regular management procedures, thus reducing the function of the design team to an abstract symbol of organisational ‘modernity’, rather than an effective instrument for social transformation.

Usage Statistics
Total downloads:
Download data is not yet available.
How to Cite
Lindberg, M., Johansson, M., & Österlind, H. (2019). Design teams – a participatory path to socially transformative innovation?. Forskning Og Forandring, 2(1), 25-38.
Original Articles
design team, gender, innovation, participatory, transformation