Create a Context Map
Understand, reframe, and scope a design challenge
A Context Map helps team members to grow a common understanding of the forces that are in play around a given design challenge. It also helps define the boundaries around the project, clarifying the project’s scope and focus.
Get the context of a design challenge
Designers, Business Leads
15 - 30 minutes
Before You Start
- Use the Explore phase to select the best innovation opportunities
- To make sure that you have identified and selected the best innovation opportunities according to your company’s strategic goals and objectives, we recommend you use the the Explore phase methods suggested here:
Recommended Path: Explore
Materials you will need
Templates for Download
Templates for Virtual Collaboration
Creating a Context Map includes several steps. We recommend completing them in one session.
Start a silent brainstorming on perspectives
Each member brainstorms up to 8 perspectives in regard to the challenge. Perspectives can be high-level and detailed.
Share perspectives to the team
Team members present their perspectives to the team, while clustering them to the given 8 petals. After everyone shares their perspectives, give each petal a name.
Vote and select important clusters
Every team member gets three votes to select the petal cluster they think is the most important one. The petal with the most votes will be a key input for the challenge focus.
While working on the petal clusters, don’t place a perspective between two petals. Each aspect has to be sorted out to one petal.
Petal clusters can and should be rearranged if an aspect doesn’t fit, and no petal should remain free.
It’s okay if not all perspectives are placed in the petals as long as everybody agrees to leave this perspective out.
The team can use this analysis to reframe and better understand the design challenge. This may help to improve the scoping of the project.