Design Fiction: Using Science Fiction for Innovation

Innovation has become a focus point on corporative discussions, and an urgent need to standout in any industry. Techniques such as design fiction, that stimulates creativity in simulates scenarios, is a new practice that can add competitive value to businesses.

Here you will understand what the meaning of design fiction is and how it can generate innovative ideas for your company.

What is the meaning of design fiction?

Design fiction is an approach that uses elements of science fiction to explore future scenarios and develop innovative solutions. This methodology creates hypothetical narratives to predict customer needs in the future and design optimized user experience.

Using design fiction allows the anticipation of trends and broadens creativity for innovation. By idealizing products and services traditionally, companies face boundaries as to what is possible with today’s tools and knowledge. On the other hand, by considering movies, tv shows and sci-fi books, there are endless possibilities.

Therefore, is a great way to push teams to think outside the box, ignore all known limits and propose truly innovative ideas. It might sound crazy for some, but is it not crazy the speed with which new technologies are launched to the market? Design fiction allows a deeper understanding of these new technologies implications and how business models should quickly adapt to them.

What are the advantages of using design fiction?

It can be observed many advantages from applying design fiction in the long term.

Added Value

The digital era has made it easier to access and compare offers. Design fiction might be the appropriate approach to plan today how the company will standout in the future, and deliver products and services with true added value.

Market Strategy

By imagining future challenges and opportunities, one can stablish strategies for the long run. By doing so, organizations can design innovative projects and standout from competition. It also means that the company would be more on top of market expectations before they even change.


Understanding products and services longevity is mandatory for the survival of any business model. In this matter, through design fiction, one can explore the potential performance of a product or service in the future. It helps planning adaptations, creating new projects, and maintaining competitive advantage.

How to apply design fiction?

There are some steps to follow if you wish to apply Design Fiction to your business.

Identifying problems in the future

First, one must look at the future and create scenarios that might fit into that reality. This is a team work and to really succeed you must consider a fiction reality and identify the possible challenges you might face in that future time. For example, imagine in the future we have flying cars. In this reality, how would car pieces adapt, which resources would be necessary and what are the external demands of users.

Mapping future scenarios

The second step is to determine how will these future ideations be projected, how they will affect current demand and their consequences. At this point, it is important to investigate the organization and define what is possible, plausible, and desired, according to current limitations.

Mapping current scenarios

In the next stage, the team will draw correlations between the imaginary future and the current reality. Look at the main items previously defined and deepen them. The teams will than plan the activities requires to develop these items, according to the limitations previously found.

Enabling solutions

Finally, it is time to present the idealized solutions. It is important to approach these topics:

  • Value proposal: what is the goal of this solution?
  • Customer segmentation: who will be impacted?
  • Channels: what channels will be used to communicate with customers?
  • Activities and key resources: which of them are necessary to deliver the project?
  • Partners and costs: how will it be paid and by whom?
  • Revenue: how will this project generate financial return?

If you are looking to innovate in your industry using design fiction and other latest trends, we are the right partners for your journey. Talk to one of our consultants today!

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