Applied Design Thinking covers the full spectrum of problem interrogation through co-creation of possible solutions, to the implementation of shortlisted concepts and their passage from desirability to viability.

The School of Design Thinking offers end-to-end Applied Design Thinking to educational institutions, public and private sector enterprise, and communities in search of transformational change.

Led by Dr. Ashok Korwar and Dr. Anbu Rathinavel, the school is collaborating with reputed global education institutions to develop robust frameworks and a rigorous change impact measure that draws on learnings from every course run.

Deep immersion session already conducted include :


A series of interventions planned to help entrepreneurs identify the constraints they may be operating under, and how to break through these constraints to grow.  The first in this series (of three) intervention was a one day workshop to explore the possibility of growing 10x.  The workshop focused on design mindset and how one can identification of blind spots that may hinder growth.  The second workshop in this series is a 4 hour intervention on Mental Models for growth which focuses unconscious cognitive constraints.  The Silicon Valley-bound 150 members of JITO leveraged a 2-day visit into an active learning opportunity that will build the foundation for accelerated growth of the their respective organisations.


One day program for a cross over bike start up designed to explore consumer insights applying Design Thinking process and tools.  Using personas and consumer journeys, participants identified focus areas market segmentation and go-to-market plans and launch plans.


Programmes scheduled over the next two quarters include :

  • Session on Design Mindset in Design Thinking Conclave in Mumbai in October
  • Preparing the Design Mind program for open audience across India (November ’16 through January ’17).  One day workshops targeting senior management audience will focus on various elements that are required to prepare the Design Mind.
  • Conference on Design Thinking for School principals scheduled in December with an objective of introducing the concept and approach at the school level.  Creating early awareness in academics, is critical to early adoption of designing thinking practices.
  • Management courses and MDP in Design Thinking (November ‘16 and March ’17) in partnership with IIT Madras Department of Management Studies.

Participants get hands-on during a product interrogation session.

JITO session in progress. Laying the foundation for the application of design thinking to grow their respective organisations.

The power of design thinking comes from focusing on what the right question is, rather than what the right answer is. This approach is story-driven and leads with feelings and emotions. At the centre of design thinking is end-user experience, which requires designers to put on the empathy hat.

School of Design Thinking

Project leads :

Dr. Ashok Korwar

Dr. Ashok Korwar is a management consultant based in Pune. His work is focused on helping companies and people grow to the next level. Before becoming a full-time consultant, he was professor at IIM, Ahmedabad, for 10 years. At IIMA, he was chairman of the PGP (MBA) program, and coordinated the Senior Management and MEP programs. His book ‘Creating Markets Across the Globe’ won the DMA/Escorts prize for best management book in 1997. He has worked in the US with EDS Corp until 1990. He earned a Ph.D. in management from UCLA in 1982 and B.Tech from IIT Bombay in 1977.

Dr. Korwar on account of his consulting experience as well as his zeal for Design thinking based solutions leads the School for Design Thinking. He is therefore a valuable member of the Advisory Council for Leadership Capacity Building at Mission Samriddhi.

Anbu Rathinavel

A strong believer in Design as a philosophy and Design Thinking approach as a way of life, Dr. Anbu Rathinavel is currently building the same as the culture in Intellect Design Arena Ltd. and society at large. He is leveraging the world’s first design center for financial technology – the 8012 FT Design Center – to inculcate collaborative designing and providing lasting experience to customers using Design as Deep Differentiator. He is also an executive coach, who extensively uses the Strength Philosophy coaching model that helps corporate leaders and managers to focus on lasting impact. He completed his Doctorate in Artificial Intelligence at Ohio University in 1995 and went on to work for the US Navy organization until 2000.

Dr. Anbu, is a valuable member of the Advisory Council for Leadership Capacity Building at Mission Samriddhi.