What aspects of the challenge will you focus on?

Find the right problem to focus on by making sense of the information gathered in the Discover stage.

Synthesise the data to generate insights – new or surprising interpretations that sharpen our understanding of the challenge, and to identify specific problems you can work on to find solutions.

Work collaboratively with users, colleagues and others to avoid making decisions based on assumptions and biases.

With the problem pinpointed, you can confidently set the design brief.

Key Topics

Make sense of the data and pinpoint the right problem before moving onto solutions

Find out more Find out more


Use this summary to see if you have what you need for this stage

Find out more Find out more

Start with the why, and then select the tool

There are a wide range of tools available for each stage of the design process. It is important to think about what you seek to achieve and then to find or create a tool that would help you to do that.

You can find a full list of tools in the Tool Directory, but here are some suggestions to get you started in Define:

Affinity mapping

Affinity mapping, also known as affinity analysis or sense-making, is a visual technique used to organise and categorise large amounts of data or information.

How Might We

'How Might We' statements help turn insights into opportunities for design.


Stages of the Double Diamond

Creating the conditions

In our programmes at Healthcare Improvement Scotland, we learned that it is important to build readiness for change, identify the right people to be involved, and to plan effectively.

Find out more


Understand the challenge space

Find out more


Co-create possible solutions that are visual and engaging to test with service users.

Find out more


Introduce the service in phases, optimising the design before full scale launch.

Find out more


Example from practice

Midlothian getting 'stuck' and 'unstuck'

Midlothian Health and Social Care Partnership aimed to transform traditional models of care to enable the increasing numbers of people living with frailty to achieve their best possible quality of life. COVID19 presented a number of challenges and the team has shared their learning in getting unstuck.

Find out more
Last Updated: 23 February 2024