Following my previous post, I think I’ve pretty much set my mind on concentrating on producing a business plan for my dissertation. My current Field module is heavily business and business designing/marketing based and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it and found it extremely interesting. As a result of this module, I’ve built a good understanding and ground knowledge for the research required in the planning and starting of the business for example competitor brands/markets, target markets, promotional strategies etc as well as some of the techniques behind the visuals and key features for example logo/name/strapline , social media and website design, product/merchandise design and moving on from this, the marketing and promotional strategies involved including trends, hashtags, social media layout, designing adverts, influencers etc. I will use all of this knowledge/understanding to continue building upon it and therefore, be able to include some supported literature and explanation on this part of the business in my dissertation proposal.

Having spoken to Martyn with regards to potentially doing a business plan instead, he explained that Sarah runs the study group focusing on the writing and creation of business plans so I thought I’d firstly check out her Moodle page to see if I could find any starting information here. Here I found a Ted Talks video, , I thoroughly enjoy these as it is so decided to listen/watch it twice over to try and gain a thorough understanding of what was being said. Essentially, Simon Senek in his talk ‘How great leaders inspire action’ he discusses how successful ideas/business are created by using an inside out approach instead thus better connecting with the customer and an identified problem/solution. This was very interesting, in particularly some of the case studies he uses including Apple, Dell and many other business’. In the grand scheme, this isn’t too dissimilar to my business idea and where it has stemmed from so, I will definitely be referring back to this and possibly some of the examples used within my own work and research. I learned that you have to be thoroughly connected and really believe in and feel for what it is that you’re trying to do/create in order for others to feel for and believe in what you’re doing too. I feel this is definitely relevant in my case, delving into the field and business of medical/inclusive design having had direct contact with this world for the past ten years of my life and will continue to have contact and be part of this world for the remaining future.


I’ve also started by reading some past examples of business plans in the form of dissertations within the creative industry to gain a better understanding of what it is that I will be writing and the kind of format that it will follow.

I think my biggest downfall at this point is the critical part of the paper and how I will critically engage with the topic in order to relate back to why exactly this business plan exists and in turn, why/how it will stand out and be successful.  Unfortunately, my health has taken a turn for the worst again over the last couple of weeks which has taken a lot of my time for research and exploration away from me. However, I’m going to ty not to let this hinder my progress too much and start doing research into what literature exists in this field already and detect some wider reading that I can begin doing in order to broaden my knowledge and support my work. I will try and note/record these findings in this part of my blog so that I can concisely find and refer back to this initial research all in one place.

A very broad, initial explanation of my concept, which I will use as a starting point for my further reading and research focuses on EMPATHETIC MEDICAL DESIGN / EMPATHETIC DESIGN WITHIN THE FIELD OF ILLNESS / CHRONIC ILLNESS. I will research into how a better empathetic approach can be taken in this sector could transform user experience, the perspectives of a wider circle of people, stigmas etc. I will focus on IBD (irritable bowel disease) and the stoma bag but am open to research case studies within a broader field of empathetic design/medical design to begin with.

I have emailed Clara Watkins, course leader for product design and also researcher into medical design to see if she can point me in the right direction of useful literature for my research. I plan to have a better discussion with her a little further down the line as I feel she could provide great insight into this subject field as she specialises in design within the medical industry and has a lot of involvement within this field.

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I’ve broadly began using MetSearch to start looking for appropriate literature to use.


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Topics that have arisen from some of my initial reading / research which I could use for focus within my research / writing;

  • UCD – User Centred Design
  • Design Affordances
  • Social Media – the use of social media today, to share product experience
  • Empathy in healthcare / experience of care – the same relevance in this empathy of care can be carried through to empathy in medical product design. The importance therefore, could be equally weighted.-

    ‘Today reality is that design reinforces connectivity and collaboration. Interestingly, empathy is antithetical to separateness and isolation (Bolognini, 1997). This is illustrated in the healthcare context, ‘‘Emotionally engaged physicians communicate more effectively, decreasing patient anxiety and improving patients’ coping, leading to better outcomes’’ (Halpern, 2007, p. 696) and ultimately engagement supports the continuum of care (Press Ganey, 2007).  – Look to who these articles are citing and referencing, see to their literature for further info/research.

  • – Appliances for future

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