HCD Uncut

HCD Uncut

Reflecting on the past and building scenarios for a collective future vision



HCD Uncut was an immersive and interactive expert workshop held in Berlin in November 2017 to critically reflect on the current practice of HCD in global health and development and imagine a visionary way forward.

48 experts working with HCD in Global Health and Development from the perspectives of providing design services, funding HCD initiatives as well as programme implementation came together to share and discuss challenges, failures and roadblocks in the successful application of HCD. The workshop ended with a co-created vision on the future of HCD in Global Health and Development and a set of thematic priorities to guide funders in their efforts to support this work.

Five pictures with different moments of the workshop
The workshop brough 48 experts to cocreate and analyse the discpline of HCD in Global Health and Development.

The workshop was structured over two days. The first day's goal was to look back by analysing failures and roadblocks to ideate, while the second day's objective was to build scenarios towards a collective future vision.

Summary of some participant perspectives of the failures and roadblocks.

After sharing the enablers and disablers along the design journey for designers, donors, and implementing partners, each participant was asked to write down their 3 key ideas for solutions.

The exercise created a wealth of ideas addressing different kinds of challenges and topics.

The opportunity areas that emerged from the workshop:

  1. Define, Differentiate & Communicate: define design, and tailor the lexicon, principles, behaviors, and frameworks that surround design for global health audiences.
  2. Adapt & Integrate: Improve design approaches, particularly for better integration with other disciplines, and understand the use cases for design in global health.
  3. Preserve Integrity & Quality: Ensure the integrity and quality of design and research practices and understand that cross-disciplinary integration does not mean dilution.
  4. Share & Learn: Build a community of practice that integrates design into global health projects with the goal of sharing experiences and transferring know-how.
  5. Train & Educate: Expand design capacity through activities that improve design awareness, design fluency, and design practice in communities where the need is greatest.
  6. Collect Data & Evidence: Define a set of principles for how to collect a body of evidence on how the data and results of an effective design process can contribute to health outcomes.
  7. Structure Contract & Fund: Assess design costs and improve the way projects are funded, structured, and sequenced so that they can better integrate approaches like design.


At the end of our second day, stakeholders presented their visions” It’s just to have “takeaway”
At the end of our second day, stakeholders presented their visions” It’s just to have “takeaway”

After the workshop the team analysed all the material generated by the participants and developed a workshop report. This resource provides detailed documentation of the discussions and ideas co-created during the two days of the HCD Uncut event. Reflections on failures and roadblocks from the past, enablers and disablers along the journey of an investment, opportunity areas for better integration of design in global health and vision and scenarios for a future state of design in global health are all contained in this document.


Global health

Our services

  • Strategy

  • Co-creation

Partner organisations

  • Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact

In the media

No related media.


No items found.

Other projects

No items found.

Interested in working with us for a better future?