Co-Creating the Future
with University College Copenhagen
How do we create a healthcare system, including personnel and educational institutions, that are future-ready?
Together with University College Copenhagen, we’ve used design thinking and methods to develop and explore how we can dissent and integrate future challenges into the educational structure of our health personnel. As part of this collaboration, the newly opened Future Lab ‘Exploratoriet’ has been established as an instructional tool to facilitate teaching and foster new partnerships.
The Results: Increased interprofessional collaboration
The project resulted in closer collaboration across the management. Based on the course, several interprofessional associations were created among the students.
The realization has also meant that educational leaders from different fields today work together to develop new courses across educations with interprofessional collaboration in focus.
Two new profile educations were created:
- One profile was developed based on a trend about individualized medicine, and the students were taught to handle specialized personal medicine
- The second profile was based upon a trend related to the increased number of patients with chronic diseases. Focusing on diabetes, the students were taught about the disease but also trained in being able to understand how to work with diabetes patients
"We've thought of some things we would not have thought of otherwise – and we've done it together"
Dean, University College Copenhagen
Additionally, the establishment of the Future Lab ‘Exploratoriet’ representing four different future scenarios in the healthcare sector has positively affected students, teachers, and leaders at University College Copenhagen.
Part of the result has been a process of organizational development as educational leaders and teachers have been forced to examine the future and its significance for educational programs.
Through the tangible installation of future scenarios, students have gained a broader view of their profession and developed new and different perspectives on the development of future healthcare solutions.
Ultimately, the ‘Exploratorium’ helps University College Copenhagen redefine professional identities, develop innovative solutions in the healthcare sector, and reimagine the (possible) future of technology.
What is ‘Exploratoriet’?
The Future Lab ‘Exploratoriet’ is an immersive installation of four distinct scenarios taking shape as physical installations you can walk into, immerse yourself in, and explore: what does it feel like, smell like, and sound like in the future? The future scenarios are a tool that aims to create a reflective space about the health system of the future through a series of personal human stories.
‘Exploratoriet’ works as a didactic tool and teaching resource for students at the University College Copenhagen and a valuable innovation resource for collaborations with private companies within the comprehensive healthcare system.
The Challenge: New and different requirements for the future health sector
We live in difficult and unpredictable times. Emerging technology, pandemics, significant climate changes, and war – to name a few. We know for sure that no one can predict the future. The future is not given, but we can help shape it.
Times of uncertainty also apply to healthcare systems, where the future welfare challenges are multidimensional and overwhelming. A comprehensive transformation is taking place. Digital, technological, and medical development is constantly pushing the boundaries of healthcare and the understanding of diseases, health, and the human body itself.
New understandings create new requirements, and these will apply to the health service as a whole, but equally to the associated institutions, professional groups, and individual health professionals.
Ultimately, our actions today affect tomorrow. We carry out extensive research into human behavior and interaction through scenario-based design to explore different and realistic future outcomes. Seizing the future is undoubtedly a big and challenging task. Still, with a scenario-based approach, now physically manifested at the University College Copenhagen, we can navigate the sea of uncertainty. By starting new discussions, identifying blind spots, and getting closer to each other, we can understand what a possible future might look like.
So how do we prepare our healthcare personnel and our educational institutions for the future?
"The scenarios provide a great way to look at the technologies. You can imagine what the different technologies will be like and how they can evolve in practice. They allow me to think differently"
University College Copenhagen
The Approach: A shared vision for the future health sector
In the fall of 2018, the Faculty of Health Sciences (SFF) at Copenhagen University College and the DDC entered a collaboration to ensure that the transformations we see on the healthcare horizon today are discussed, decided upon, and included in the Faculty of Health Science, education building, competence development, and teaching.
The collaboration was based on our project Boxing Future Health. Here, four possible future scenarios are set up within the health area, physically embodied in a permanent installation ‘Exploratoriet’ with four separate rooms. Transformation possibilities are put at the forefront, which activates and provokes new ways of thinking.
Through an experimental and systematic process combining design methods and future research, the Faculty of Health Sciences’ practice and insights were brought into play through a targeted process called Future Challenge.
Twenty-four participants – heads of department, heads of education, and the Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences participated in the course, which included five phases over four weeks.
“Working with the scenarios showed us that you can not just look at the educational standards for one profession, because when the healthcare sector changes, it affects all the professions"
Dean, University College Copenhagen
Scenario Design: What We Offer
If you are interested in changing your organization through futures design and scenario design, we’ll gladly help you. We tailor the specific event to your exact needs and situation.
- Talk: Listen to the Future
Book us for an inspirational talk, where you are invited into our scenario universe. The talk can be part of a conference or an independent event, and it can be physical or virtual. This type of event works as a great reference point for future discussions in your organization and as a first step in understanding how future scenarios can create value for you.
- Workshop: Touch the Future
Use a half or full day to get an in-depth experience and new knowledge about your future organization. We’ll take you through relevant exercises and bring you forward in your process. The workshop can be physical or virtual.
Can’t get enough of design and innovation? We hear you. And we have you covered.
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