Designing the Future of Commerce | Visa Experience Studio 2017


My name is Alexander Baumgardt. I’m an adjunct professor at California College
of the Arts and partner at Future Draft Consultancy who solves complex problems through co-creation. The class that I’m teaching is the Experience
Design Studio, a class that looks at designing product and service ecologies. This Spring of 2017, we have the pleasure
of having our class sponsored by VISA. This is an amazing opportunity to work with
the CCA team. We had a really great kick-off today. Very enthusiastic bunch of folks. We put some really interesting problems in
front of them. The VISA global design team gave us two briefs
that were looking at very particular actions between two actors in the overall ecosystem. How to we empower merchants to accept payments
more readily? Not just in the physical world but more importantly
in the digital world. It’s great to have these kind of bright minds
coming in to help bring new ideas into this large organization. That’s what I’m really excited about. The brief we gave the CCA students is about
millennials and Gen Z. We call them new-generation audiences. Our students are very much focused around
designing what the future of technology is going to look like. In this case, we really wanted to take a broad
look at what is the future of commerce? And what does that look like out in the real
world? We were really excited when VISA was open
to having the conversation for this sponsored studio. I think one of the coolest things I’ve learned
while a student here is about just putting something together and then getting feedback
on it. That’s sort of what happened today. It’s like, you put something together kinda
quick, and you put out some ideas. We framed out thoughts. Over the course of approximately five weeks,
the students were doing some research, were developing prototypes, and then creating solutions
that they eventually presented in their final presentation. One of the unique things about that process
was that VISA’s design team was highly engaged throughout the entire process. We had ideation workshops at VISA’s design
studio on site, and the VISA design team was visiting us quite a bit at CCA as well. This project is unique among some of the other
projects that we have in the class. We’re all trying to get our heads around it
while at the same time coming up with something that’s really cool and really works for everyone. So it’s really helpful to have these guys
from VISA come in and give us a little bit of direction and clarify things for us. I like to see how they discuss. Their perspective is really different, so
the conversation is really interesting. We have students from graphic design, direction
design. Like various backgrounds. The most surprising thing is the passion and
excitement that the students all bring into the project, and just the really wide range
of ideas that everybody’s come up with. Every team has arrived at a really different,
unique solution. We got to work really closely with professionals
and get really close mentorship wherein we are continuously challenged to push ourselves
into our skills. It’s been a really great learning experience
for us. There’s a lot of overlap between some stuff
that we’re actually working on back at VISA and some of the ideas that the college designers
here come up with, and it’s been really impressive to kind of compare and contrast what we’re
thinking about and they’re thinking about. I don’t know, it’s just all been great. Today all student teams have to present it
at VISA’s global headquarter in Foster City, California. We always like to get inspiration from outside
of VISA. Sometimes there’s a lot of sources of inspirations,
such as the competitive analysis. You look at what’s happening in other industries. Talk amongst our peer colleagues in professional
society. However, we often realize some of the fresh
ideas come from students. So when we decide to work with CCA to really
further extend our creativity by working with students, but at the same time learning from
the students as much as we offer something the students can take away from a real-life
experience. I’m really thrilled about all the work that
the students have produced and shown. One of the teams was selected, but everyone
has won at this project. The feedback that I got from the global design
team was really good. Some of the work validated some of the innovation
projections. The team has already established themselves,
but also some of the ideas that were new and interesting to them and they’re evaluating
how they can take it into the business.

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