16 February 2016
Dear colleagues and students
It gives me great pleasure to announce the addition of a new institute of design thinking to the university.
Set up with seed funding from the Hasso Plattner Trust, the School of Design Thinking at UCT is the third institute of its kind in the world, joining the well-established Hasso Plattner Institutes of Design Thinking at the universities of Stanford and Potsdam.
Its overall objective is to promote design thinking to meet the needs of users in complex socio-political and economic contexts through “collaboration, human-centredness, creative thinking and learning through doing”.
The first pilot programme, for postgraduate students currently registered at UCT, will start on 8 March, and will run on two days a week, over 10 weeks. This pilot has an intake of 30 confirmed students who represent a diverse group in terms of background, gender and discipline.
The school's founding director is Richard Perez, who joined UCT from a three-year stint at the City of Cape Town municipality where he worked to embed a culture of design-led innovation in a government administration.
We welcome Richard and his team to UCT and wish them every success in the development of their programmes in this pilot year.
Professor Francis Petersen
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