The Masterclass by Alessandro Rancati: Design for Policy

The sixth and final Service Design Masterclass, a special format of the Master in Service Design that aims at investigating cutting-edge topics connected to the world of Service Design, was held remotely by the following team of design experts working at the Policy Lab of the European Commission: Alessandro Rancati, Maciej Jastrzebiec-Pyszynski, Vera Winthagen, Eckhard Störmer and Lucia Vesnić-Alujević.

Aim of the Masterclass was to explain the work done at the Policy Lab and how they are integrating design fundamentals into their practice. Alessandro Rancati first introduced part of the methodology adopted in the Lab for collaboration across units as well as how design is conceived, always in relation with culture and context. An overview of the role of the Lab was given, stressing the innovative approach it brings to policy making, focusing on insights and thinking rather than ready-made solutions.

The rest of the team presented then a series of projects they developed inside the unit. Lab Connections was a series of participatory seminars/workshops aimed at sharing the Policy Lab approach with the rest of the department, where different stakeholders and professionals would collaborate at roundtables experiencing the Lab process. Two projects regarded respectively the future of government and the future of farmers, where speculative design concepts were adopted to spark different kinds of conversation around the topics, while the final case presented by Rancati was the Social Economy Canvas. This is a newly developed tool that tries to add another layer to the known business model canvas, which centers around the relationship aspect among the various components of the system.

We help people think about the policy problem in a different way.