Ed Gardiner is the Behaviour Design Lead at Warwick Business School. For the last three years, Ed led a partnership with the Design Council called the Behavioural Design Lab, applying insights and methods from behavioural science to support the design of new products and services with a social purpose. Before joining WBS, Ed worked for the advertising agency, Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe / Y&R, managing creative campaigns for private and public sector clients. He holds an MA in Natural Sciences (Psychology) from the University of Cambridge and an MSc in Cognitive and Decision Sciences from UCL. Ed is also part of the Create programme at WBS, exploring new teaching and research opportunities on the role of design and creativity in business.
I met Ed through the powers of twitter (thanks Simon!) and I’m delighted he is coming to talk to the Experience Design students at Hyper Island as part of their design research proejct. Here’s what he has to say…
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learnt over the last year?
I miss working in a close knit team. I’ve learnt so much from the people I’ve worked with over the last few years. I feel like I’m moving backwards if I’m not around people who are doing new and interesting things, and value the importance of people. Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.
What’s your burning question of the moment?
How can we develop simple, systematic ways of helping people work more effectively together? People must coordinate to exchange their knowledge, skills and resources in pursuit of common goals. I’m interested in how advances in behavioural science, design and digital technology can help solve the coordination problems that many people experience when trying to understand complex issues or implement new ideas.
What’s the most inspiring thing you’ve seen / heard / read in last year?
The Righteous Mind by Jonathan Haidt. It was published a couple of years ago but I’m always re-reading bits. It’s helped me understand what shapes people’s different points of view on social and political issues and made me more open to opposing views. People may differ in their opinions based on different moral values but it’s still possible for those with opposing views to sincerely want what’s best for society. There’s rarely a ‘right’ way or answer.
What would be your one piece of advice to students on MA?
If you’re looking to change jobs and can’t find the right one, look for jobs where you can apply your mix of skills by stealth. New approaches and thinking often don’t fit into traditional career pathways and job descriptions. Find the people, causes, problems and companies you’re passionate about and demonstrate how your interests and talents are relevant. Random emails and coffees can go a long way.
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