A successful new edition of the Service Design Days conference took place on September 16 and 17, 2022, in Barcelona. The 7th edition of this global conference centred on shifting the paradigm and tackling short-termism.

As individuals, businesses, and governments, it's in our nature to focus on the present. Being in tune with the now keeps us alert and aware of the potential opportunities as well as problems that lie in front of us. However, with so much in flux, we need to look further ahead. Despite the urgency of present actions, we shouldn't lose sight of long-term challenges. It's time to start designing a better future for all.

Hundreds of creative thinkers and doers from around the globe joined SDD2022, got inspired by expert talks, and participated in interactive case study sessions and lectures by professors from different universities. Attendees practised new methods, approaches and strategies and heard fresh ideas and new perspectives from various industries, contexts and stakeholders. All went home with a suitcase full of insights and ideas and a drive to create value for the long run.

Were you unable to participate? SDD2022 Replay gives you access to all keynotes, case studies and lectures.

In line with the last conference theme, we will continue designing a better future for all. Designers and other creative thinkers possess a unique mindset and toolkit to empathise, pinpoint pain points, connect the dots, tell the story, visualise future scenarios and contribute to positive transformation by designing valuable products and services for people and the planet.

For the past centuries, organisations have primarily answered to a business model built on the 18th-century productivity canon, giving birth to new consumer behaviours and habits, and altering our relationship with each other and the planet. Still today, many organisations have yet to define holistic, longer-range strategies and continue to take ad-hoc approaches to value creation to fulfil the paradigm of an outdated productivity regime.

In this rat race of quick wins and instant results, we forget to carve out time for long-term thinking and value creation. By looking at the big picture, we can design interventions, make small-step progress, experiment, anticipate and adjust, being patient but confident in the results. Drafting a plan and working towards our desired outcomes while staying true to ourselves and committed for the long haul.

Let's be activists, rebels, leaders and dreamers of what the world could be. Let's continue what we started at the last SDD conference. Trade quick profits for long-lasting success. Shift from persisting interactions to behavioural interventions. And act small by envisioning something bigger. The time is now to create value that can make that future happen.

We are a transdisciplinary conference for change-makers, influencers, and decision-makers of small and large organisations, involved in product and service innovation, organisation transformation, and value creation through design. The conference is part of the Service Design College - a next-generation design school that brings together strategic designers from around the globe to contribute towards a sustainable future by learning, sharing and co-creating together through physical and online peer-to-peer learning activities.

One of the ways to boost transdisciplinary knowledge sharing and bring new insights and meaning to the world of design and beyond is by organising the annual Service Design Days. With our conference, we want to break silo thinking, combine our joint creativity, and contribute to common challenges. Together, we develop and promote design practices that positively contribute to solving 21st-century problems by enabling innovation, transformation, and personal growth.

Would you like to unleash your creativity and tackle both small challenges and wicked, complex problems? Are you looking for new ideas, best practices and tools to innovate and transform in a human-centric, design-driven way? Join us!

Register for the Service Design College Campus and learn from researchers, innovators, professors, service designers, customer experience strategists and others.

Get inspired by stories from small start-ups to large corporates on how to reframe challenges and develop valuable solutions. Practise creative and strategic thinking with approaches such as foresight, open innovation and systems thinking. And experience how design can contribute to human-centric problem-solving and forward-thinking innovation.

Together with Philips and in collaboration with IBM, IKEA and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, we organise the annual Student Service Design Challenge. This challenge is a unique and international design competition amongst students, celebrating excellence in service design. It is initiated by Philips Experience Design and aims to challenge creative minds to envision service design concepts that matter based on an actual, tangible, real-life case they can relate to.

The competition is open to students worldwide who want to design engaging service solutions that are inclusive and sustainable and address existing and urgent needs. Students are encouraged to work in multidisciplinary teams. Teamwork stimulates collaborative creativity and excellence for a chance to win a Design Incubator Prize, a 10-week service design support program to receive guidance from the Challenge Dragons and other experts who can help the winning team further prototype and optimise their concept along the route to success.

The global design competition is a unique opportunity for students to work with regarded experts in the fields of innovation, design research, social design, ux and service design.

Visit the challenge website to view the winners of the 3rd edition who were called to design disruptive service solutions built on collaborative and sharing models that positively contributed to people, planet and its resources.

The 4th edition of the Student Service Design Challenge is already underway, focusing on designing services that build resilience, safeguard and improve individual and social wellbeing. The competition is open to design students currently enrolled in an accredited design school or university.

The Service Design Days conference has been organised since 2016. Previous editions have focused on how to ‘stay fit for the future’ (2016), ‘deliver value and be valuable’ (2017), ‘adapt to change’ (2018), ‘innovate for sustainable futures’ (2019), ‘a blended tomorrow - expanding design horizons with technology’ (2020), ’new perspectives - breaking out of the design bubble’ (2021) and 'shifting the paradigm - tackle short-termism and create value for the long run’ (2022). As people’s needs and demands evolve, it is becoming more difficult for organisations to live up to the expectations of their customers, their employees, and society as a whole. Coping with continuous change, solving problems, and staying valuable are permanent challenges.

A mixed group of international experts has addressed these challenges. Their fields of expertise span across the entire range of disciplines under the Service Design umbrella and far beyond.

Watch a video impression below and read more about the past editions.