Design thinking in Armenia’s innovation market - Mediamax.am

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Design thinking in Armenia’s innovation market


Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Photo: Mediamax

Arman Arakelyan
Arman Arakelyan

Photo: Mediamax


Creative Spark is a British Council programme aimed at developing enterprise education. Mediamax will provide updates on the implementation of the programme in cooperation with the British Council. 

 

American University of Armenia is implementing “Get Ready to Innovate Armenia” program in the scope of the British Council’s Creative Spark, and Mediamax sat down with head of the program Arman Arakelyan to learn the details.

 

About the program 

 

The full name of the program is “Creative Spark: Get Ready to Innovate Armenia”. The American University is cooperating with School of Design of Northumbria University in the scope of the program. The collaboration is not new, as American University has worked with one of the Northumbria professors since 2012.

 

Photo: Mediamax

 

The main objective of the program is to teach practical skills to people creating innovations based on design thinking. Northumbria University implements it since 2009.

 

Design Thinking 

 

When we say “design thinking”, we assume it is a practice that only concerns designers or stylists.

 

Photo: Mediamax

 

Actually, this term describes an emerging way of thinking that has been tested and used by all original and famous figures in art, literature, science, music, technology and business.

 

Design thinking teaches to organize your mind, learn and try innovative things and use all that when it is necessary to find an innovative solution for a creative process, life in general, and even politics.

 

Photo: Mediamax

 

The policy and methodology of design thinking are applied in Apple, Google, Samsung and GE. It is a part of curriculum in Stanford, Harvard and Northumbria universities.

 

The areas of focus

 

The first area of focus is the work with startup founders. They are architects, musicians, sculptors, people of art. The program teaches them how to turn their creative ideas into creative startups.

 

Photo: Mediamax

 

First they learn to form an action plan and then they simplify the tasks and define a policy. For all practical tasks we use the model developed by Northumbria University.

 

The second area of focus is the work with trainers.

 

The trainers

 

The program includes meetings with lecturers from Northumbria University. Leading experts in Design Thinking Nick Spencer and Neil Smith have already held several seminars for the trainers.

 

Recently American University hosted top expert of the field Michele Rusk, whose work experience includes collaborations with the governments of the Netherlands, England and Ireland.

 

Photo: Mediamax

 

At American University she teaches design thinking in policy making. Rusk’s students are employees of the Armenian Ministry of Education and Science, heads of departments and chief experts.

 

Arman Arakelyan Arman Arakelyan

Photo: Mediamax

 

“These specialists are directly involved in the making of educational policies. The biggest contribution of the workshop can be that future educational policies in Armenia are more people-oriented and allow much more consideration for the human issues,” said head of “Creative Spark: Get Ready to Innovate Armenia” Arman Arakelyan.

 

Creative Spark is a five year initiative designed to support international university and institutional partnerships to develop enterprise skills and creative economy across seven countries in Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan), South Caucasus (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia) and Ukraine through UK support. 

 

Due to the success of year one of the Creative Spark, the British Council announced it would fund a further 12 international partnerships. Each partnership will receive a maximum of GBP 40,000.

 

The applications for the grant will be accepted here from April 1 to May 12, 2019.

 

Lusin Mkrtchyan 

 

Photos: Emin Aristakesyan 

 

The series about “Creative Spark” on Mediamax.am is supported by the British Council. 

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