Practice Development

A key role of the Co-design Lab is working with public sector and community organisations to grow and nurture co-design capability. Over the past three years we have hosted a series of 3 day 'co-design experiences', supported live projects and delivered bespoke advice and coaching to teams. Our approach draws on our knowledge and expertise of co-design practice plus the practical experience working with The Southern Initiative to develop cross-agency and community focused projects. 


Policy by design

Design has the potential to make policy processes more accessible to the people most affected by it. In May 2018 we co-hosted 'Policy by Design', a landmark symposium on the role of co-design and design in policy in Aotearoa New Zealand. Sixty central and local government policy makers attended to explore the opportunities design offers.

More information
- More about the Policy by Design Symposium
- Click here for slides, resources and tools
- Blog by Penny Hagen

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Integrating co-design and evaluative practice

Integration of evaluative tools and mindsets into co-design and social innovation work is critical for understanding and increasing social impact in complex and sensitive settings. We are still learning and developing what best practice looks like in this space and the Lab is involved in a number of efforts to build our own capability and that of our partners. The resources and links below are from our collaborations on this topic with RMIT University in Melbourne Australia and Geoff Stone from Ripple Collective (website).

Research Report:
Design for Social Innovation Impact Evaluation Study, RMIT, 2017

Workshop slides
- Scaling up, out and deep: What we are learning about social innovation for transformation, International Evaluation Conference (Sept 2018)
Co-design meets evaluationcreating convergence - Aotearoa New Zealand Evaluation (ANZEA) Conference (Aug 2018)

- Praxis Reflection Tool
- Convergence tool - supporting conversations about Co-design and Evaluation
- Emerging co-design process diagram

Practice Shift Cards
As Is To Be Cards
What we need to do this Work Cards
- Design process with evaluative questions integrated


Co-design Capability BUILDING

Our co-design capability framework has been created to help teams and organisations map where they are now and create a plan for growing capability and the conditions for co-design. The flexible framework and tools helps teams to develop a tailored approach and action plan. 

Co-design capability and conditions framework
Capability framework worksheet
Capability framework discussion prompt cards

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Ethical practice is integral to co-design. It poses questions across the design process especially when working with whānau and communities. Working ethically and engaging with ethics panels and decision making processes are themes many practitioners and grappling with. We are starting a series of conversations exploring these areas and possible ways forward.

Ethical questions for design work


Co-Design experience

We have run a series of 3 day co-design experiences workshops with a diverse range of participants. Created to give people a practical hands on experience of the process, tools and principles these workshops are a fun way explore what co-design has to offer.

Summary report (7-9 November 2017)



Conferences and workshops

Presentations / slide decks

Co-design for wellbeing: building capabilities and conditions - Innovate for impact symposium: International and local perspectives on co-design & developmental evaluation ((Melbourne - 13 Sept 2018)

Seminar on co-design and policy - The Policy Lab, Melbourne (28 Aug 2018)

Co-design: unlocking the potential for better policy and delivery - ANZSOG, Perth, WA (June 2018)

Building co-design capability - IPANZ, Auckland seminar (May 2018)

Early year challenge: South Auckland ANZSOG Co-production seminar (March 2017)