As people pursue lifestyles in the suburbs and outside of city centres, having experienced the possibility and reality of working from home and the personal benefits of not having to commute daily to the office, the lens of our urban narrative is now focused on what our cities will become in the years ahead. Business as usual or a new urban renaissance?
Hybrid and remote working look here to stay as companies find the balance between lightening their infrastructure, overheads and environmental impact by letting their teams work remotely on the one hand and encouraging a new cohesion through focused…
Where next for destination retail?
In the face of challenges from online, changing consumer lifestyles and new concerns for wellbeing and sustainability, what can Shopping Centres do to become fresh again?
Their formats and the experiences they offered hadn’t changed for years. They risk becoming retail wastelands as the ecommerce revolution took over their territory and raison d’etre.
eCommerce and Direct to Consumer brands which offered innovative and experiential reasons and ways to engage, whether physically or digitally through connected stores which blurred the line between shopping and experience, commerce and education, were capturing consumers’ hearts and wallets, whilst the…
How can tomorrows products and services adapt to the evolving needs of the future home?
Even as offices, schools, restaurants and bars start to reopen, some of us are reluctant to go back to the old ways of the 9 to 5 shift, forced to commute to sit with others, when we could be, and have been, working equally well from the comfort of our homes.
For others, the decision has been taken by our…
3 thoughts on how design can connect the actions of our past to better influence the health and wellbeing of our future.
Western society prioritises the present.
We are encouraged to live and think in the here and now. Immediacy over planning, fixing rather than preventing. Cultural psychology has shown us that we see the world differently to our neighbours in the East. We see what is in front of us, they look for the bigger picture.
This is true for every aspect of our lives. We are told to buy things, just-in-time, before they sell out or become irrelevant…
How the design industry can set out the path for the future of food.
The last year has seen people reconsider the food they put in their bodies like never before: whether the rise of veganism in the UK (40% increase), investment into meat, egg and dairy substitutes (USD 3.1 billion), or the search for immunity through food (with 6 out of 10 global consumers on the hunt), our pandemic defined year has changed the way we think about the connections between our food, our health and our wellbeing.
The food and drinks industry has rallied.
Consumers are presented with…
The benefits of ‘Mobility as a Service’ are well understood and deeply felt. Our city streets and the way we navigate through the urban environment has been transformed by the interconnectedness of communal, light-touch, transport solutions.
This has helped fuel the sea-change in our priorities of the last year in how and where we work, how we get around, how we shop, and — crucially — what we expect from the services we experience in our everyday lives.
During lock-down, businesses shifted to home delivery, innovating and flexing to COVID’s restrictions to continue to serve their clients despite their retail…
Urban mobility is transforming our city streets.
There is an ever-increasing choice of innovative, slick and convenient mobility solutions being offered to city inhabitants, from ride sharing platforms to un-docked light vehicles, supported by a well-developed and embedded delivery infrastructure.
With the gradual return to some form of normality, many city dwellers will decide to forgo their cars, preferring the convenience, cost and health benefits of using public and shared transportation, particularly as hybrid working becomes standard and safety fears abate.
Money has poured into urban mobility, supported by governments and innovative start-ups working together.
The same cannot be said…
Cities, brands and individuals are re-evaluating the definition of urban mobility. It’s no longer about a ‘one size fits all’ approach. Traditional singular solutions are evolving into more sustainable, practical, meaningful approaches fit for specific purposes at specific times. Pragmatic on the one hand, more experientially rich on the other.
Mobility was changing before COVID, with ride-sharing and EVs presenting urban dwellers with a brave new world of transport and a new landscape of choice and freedom that opened a new idea of what luxury might be in urban mobility and automotive.
The seismic shifts the pandemic has brought about…
A Future of Living series
The way we live is becoming defined by two (on the face of it) simple ideas — Fast and Slow. The tensions between them sit at the heart of our appetite for faster and ever slicker services alongside a growing belief in more meaningful ways of living. ‘Living’ is a big, catch-all term but this idea of fast/slow relates to everything that touches our homes, neighbourhoods and beyond. From digital-first retail and the logistics that make it work, all the way to spaces, furnishings and devices in the home.
These two qualities are already shaping…
A Future of Living series
The customer journey is a key tool that lets us slow down, unpack and analyse the key stages of how we experience a product or service. We use it to understand customer moments and brand touch-points and find spaces along it to anchor specific ideas or concepts: We map a journey, articulate key moments, identify areas of delta and then ideate on how to resolve problems, amplify successes or create new moments.
Where the journey once focused on describing a singular experience it has now become something more complex and rich, more interwoven with other…