The project stems from Focus Lab, a laboratory with longstanding experience in offering consulting services and strategic advisory on Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsability (CSR) projects for businesses, entrepreneurial networks, public agencies and associations. The Club is a new network between entrepreneurs of the main companies in the ceramic industry production chain, currently made of different enterprises from the floor and wall tile producers, technological machinery suppliers and colours for the ceramic industry. The Club was born with two main macro-objectives in mind:
- Think Tank – ideas incubator, such as to create a round table around which the ceramic supply chain entrepreneurs may face up to each other on subjects that will necessarily shape the future both within the district and on the global stage. What will be the future scenarios in architecture, or the new urban strategies both in Italy and around the world. What will the hot themes needing to be managed in sustainability and digitalization .
- A pilot project laboratory to sustain actions and interventions to make the District more appealing, innovating and sustainable from many different points of view.
Three on-the-road workshops were held in the headquarters of the companies joining the initiative. Different themes were on the agenda, from reflections on technology, including new urban international scenarios (Smart City/Smart Building), 4.0 manufacturing practices, significance and importance of Design Thinking in the industrial development of new products, processes, services, support to innovation in the region, sustainability, circular economy, company welfare and smart working.
Many external speakers also took part in these seminars, people and experts coming from the research and the big business world: Politecnico di Milano, Università di Brescia, Università di Modena e Reggio, managers from IBM Italia and Siemens. A sort of knowledge and point of view exchange with companies that already interpreted change and thus offered food for thought to all participants. There is no doubt that this experience is almost “revolutionary” in a sense, knowing beforehand our ceramic business sector, but it is also true that in the future (today) this comes not just as necessary but inescapable.
I would like to end this entry with a Steve Jobs quote and his personal interpretation of “Design Thinking”: “Most people make the mistake of thinking design is what it looks like. People think it’s this veneer — that the designers are handed this box and told, ‘Make it look good!’ That’s not what we think design is. It’s not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”
This is what the Design Thinking mindset endorses, it takes inspiration from the techniques used by designers to develop innovative projects, envisaging a creative process in problem solving combining different levels of approach, rationalty, creativity and empathy.
We will unveil the rest at the end of all the seminars and meetings; who lived it as I did can say it has been an intriguing and very nice experience.
Cinzia Lugli | Ferro Marketing