Please Note: As a result of the outbreak of COVID-19 course dates and planned formats may change at short notice. 

Immerse yourself in design thinking practices and processes

Develop practical solutions to complex challenges

The Design Thinking in Practice programme offered at the UCT GSB, with the globally-renowned Hasso Plattner School of Design Thinking (d-school), will equip you with the tools to work differently in your organisation. This online programme uses design-led innovation as an approach to develop practical solutions to complex problems. It is designed to facilitate design thinking training and practice – characterised by human centeredness, collaboration and creativity, and promotes rapid, iterative solution generation.


12 - 19 May 2021
18 - 25 Aug 2021
17 - 24 Nov 2021


28 April 2021
4 Aug 2021
3 Nov 2021


R16 950


The practice of design thinking develops both an understanding, and the value proposition, of a human-centred approach to creating solutions – which are relevant, effective and suitable to the context in which they are applied.

Course participants work in multi-disciplinary teams with each team facilitated by a professional design thinking coach. The course pushes participants to develop their understanding of a challenge and the perspectives that frame it – by providing structured time to explore, create, prototype and test potential solutions in fast iterative cycles.

Decided that this is the programme for you?


The Hasso Plattner School of Design Thinking at the University of Cape Town (d-school) is a place where creative intelligence is unlocked, and where future-ready leadership is developed.

Students from all disciplines and industry and government executives come together at the d-school to learn to work collaboratively in diverse and inclusive multi-disciplinary teams on real world challenges and to develop human-centred innovative solutions.


If you have made your decision and you are ready to apply for this course, please click here.

If you’d like more information or if you have any further questions, please click here. You will receive an email with our course brochure along with a link to apply to this course.

You will benefit highly from this course if:

  • You are a leader, innovator, manager or entrepreneur who wants to make a difference
  • Your business or organisation wants to develop a culture of design-led innovation
  • Your business needs to adopt new ways of thinking, new strategies and solutions
  • You are interested in learning how to work in, or manage, multidisciplinary innovative teams
  • You want to develop human-centred solutions to complex challenges

Delegates on the Design Thinking in Practice course will gain:

  • The ability to work with the fundamentals of the design thinking process and its key tools and techniques
  • Experience of the different elements of design thinking – such as empathy, user-insights, understanding context, collaborative ideation, prototyping and evaluation
  • Insight into human-centred problem solving, and the value of understanding the context in which solutions are implemented
  • An ability to work in multidisciplinary, diverse teams on transversal projects, and develop techniques to communicate across disciplines
  • Confidence in creative thinking
  • An understanding of the practice of low-cost experimentation and prototyping to test ideas early
  • An understanding of how design thinking can be practically applied in a wide range of settings, from personal to global, and across disciplines and sectors


  • Participants are required to commit to being available and present for the full sessions. 
  • Participants will be divided into teams of 5 persons and each team will have their own d-school coach. A tech team will be managing and assisting with the smooth running of the programme.

To ensure that you have a positive learning experience with us, the following are required:


  • Please ensure that you have a quiet and uninterrupted space. This is a synchronous workshop where there is much interaction, in both the plenary and the team spaces.
  • You will need a few sheets of paper nearby. Post-its and markers may come in handy too.


  • You will need a device with audio and video capability (mobile phones are not suitable).
  • You will need Internet access with good bandwidth and connection.
  • Please check your Internet speed on as you will need a speed of at least 4mbps to participate effectively.
  • Please use Chrome, Firefox and Safari as a web browser if possible.


  • We will be using Zoom as our chief communication tool. Go to for this software.
  • Please ensure that you have Zoom installed on your device before the programme starts.
  • We will be using Miro as the online collaborative white-boarding platform.
  • We encourage you to visit this site for a quick introduction to Miro:
  • The d-school team will introduce you to the platform on Day 1 and the coach will manage the boards – so no need to be anxious.


Unfortunately, load shedding has resumed and we are mindful that we may be affected at some stage. Please inform your team, should you be aware of load shedding in your area.

15% for 3 - 6 applicants (discount applied from third applicant)

10% for 7+ applicants (discount applied to all applicants)

10% for alumni of UCT GSB academic and Executive Education courses

Director of the UCT d-school 

Richard is the founding director of the UCT School of Design Thinking (d-school) at the University of Cape Town. Funded by Hasso Plattner, the is a unique offering in South Africa that leverages the network of both Potsdam, Germany and Stanford, United States. It is the only African school of Design Thinking that is officially affiliated with Stanford and Potsdam, drawing on the unique expertise, research and networks of these two institutions.

Richard spent 10 years as a partner and director in an award-winning Cape Town-based new product design agency developing consumer products, services, systems and user-centred research in emerging markets for diverse local and international clients. He is also an external examiner for UCT’s engineering design course and spent a number of years lecturing UCT architecture students on the Theory of Structures. Richard’s education includes a Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Cape Town, a Masters in Innovation Design Engineering from the Royal College of Art and Imperial College of Science and Technology (London) and an Executive MBA (awarded with Distinction) from the UCT Graduate School of Business.


The Design Thinking in Practice course can be customised to suit your organisation’s learning and development needs and can be delivered anywhere in the world, wherever it is convenient.