DT@Scrum: Integrating Design Thinking with Software Development Processes

  • Franziska HägerEmail author
  • Thomas Kowark
  • Jens Krüger
  • Christophe Vetterli
  • Falk Übernickel
  • Matthias Uflacker
Part of the Understanding Innovation book series (UNDINNO)


Design Thinking has shown its potential for generating innovative, user-centered concepts in various projects at d.schools, in innovation courses like ME310, used by design consultancies like IDEO, and recently even in projects at large companies. However, if Design Thinking activities are not properly integrated with production processes, e.g. software development, handovers become necessary and potentially prevent great ideas from becoming real products.

To reduce the perception of these handovers as acts of “throwing a wild idea over the fence,” different integration approaches have been proposed. A seamless integration of Design Thinking into the regular development processes of software development companies, however, is still subject to research.

In this chapter, we present DT@Scrum, a process model that uses the Scrum framework to integrate Design Thinking into software development. Three operation modes, which differ in the ratio between software development and Design Thinking activities, form the foundation of our approach. Development teams chose their respective operation mode after each sprint based on how well the requirements of the product are understood. We present initial applications of our approach in two university courses, and preliminary results of an experiment that tests if and how Design Thinking can benefit from Scrum’s planning techniques. The chapter concludes with an outline of future applications of our process model in industry scenarios and experimental validations of further techniques that supplement DT@Scrum.


Initial Development Design Team Design Planning Design Thinking Industry Partner 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Franziska Häger
    • 1
    Email author
  • Thomas Kowark
    • 1
  • Jens Krüger
    • 1
  • Christophe Vetterli
    • 2
  • Falk Übernickel
    • 2
  • Matthias Uflacker
    • 1
  1. 1.Hasso Plattner Institute for Software Systems EngineeringUniversity of PotsdamPotsdamGermany
  2. 2.Institute of Information ManagementUniversity of St. GallenSt. GallenSwitzerland

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