Lou Downe 'Good Services: building user-centred organisations at scale'

Director of Housing and Land transformation / UK Government


Most of the services we use every day aren’t designed to meet our needs.

In fact, most of the services we use every day weren’t designed at all.

Design is an increasingly mainstream activity inside even our most traditional organisations, yet the services we use today are still more likely to be the product of technological constraints, political whim or personal taste than they are the conscious decisions of an individual or organisation.

Why are businesses still failing to deliver services that work for users?

The answer lies in our ability to see services as things to be designed in the first place and with it out role and realisability as a service provider.

Lou will talk about the experience of building the UK’s largest in house design teams in the UK government, and what it takes to build a truly user-centred organisation at scale.

About Lou

Lou Downe is Director of Housing and Land transformation for the UK Government, based at Homes England and author of Good Services - a book about how to design services that work.

They were previously Director of Design for the UK Government, where they established the cross-government standards for good services and founded the discipline of service design, building a community of over 3,000 designers, user researchers and content designers across government.

Lou was nominated as one of the top 50 creative leaders in the UK in 2016 and one of the world’s 100 most influential leaders in digital government in 2018 and is a passionate believer in the role of design to create a world which benefits everyone.

Pronouns: they/them

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