Unlock your creative confidence with a design thinking mindset.

Develop practical solutions to complex challenges

Design Thinking is a discipline that focuses on a design-led mindset to understand challenges, identify opportunities and innovate solutions.

The Design Thinking in Practice programme offered at the UCT GSB is in partnership with the Hasso Plattner School of Design Thinking Afrika at UCT (Hasso Plattner d-school) and aims to equip you with a new mindset to work differently in your organisation.

We all have the ability to design and by unlocking your inner creative confidence you can better understand challenges, identify opportunities and develop innovative human-centered solutions.

Delegates will gain: 

  • Insight into human-centred problem solving
  • Confidence in creative thinking
  • An ability to work in multidisciplinary and diverse teams
  • An understanding of how to practically apply design thinking in a wide range of settings

The Hasso Plattner School of Design Thinking (d-school)

The Hasso Platner School of Afrika 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.

Faculty: Richard Perez

Meet the 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 d.school is a unique offering in South Africa that leverages the d.school 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.


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

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

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



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 fast.com 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 https://zoom.us/ 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: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7L1-0DOGHDY
  • 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.

Location: Live Online
Duration: 6 days 

9-16 March 2022
11-18 May 2022
17-24 August 2022
16-23 November 2022



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