Design Researcher, CIID Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design

Client: Novo Nordisk

The aim of the project was to travel to India, China and USA and understand what it meant to be a diabetic and live with the life-long condition there.

Diabetes is a huge health challenge world over and Novo Nordisk is a world leader in developing insulin delivery systems for diabetes. But the current explosion of diabetes to epidemic proportions all over the world,  has meant that new social trends and health tendencies need to be understood for Novo Nordisk to continue developing relevant solutions. It needed a contextual understanding of how diabetics cope with managing diabetes, acceptance of medication, the role of their healthcare providers, support from the family etc. Our research confirmed the fact that insulin is part of the solution, but not the entire solution, and this led Novo to consider other kinds of initiatives that would positively influence people’s lifestyles. Local infrastructure, both at a city scale and personal homes, personal health beliefs, peer pressures and superstitions, insurance mechanisms, state support and family- all affected how a patient coped with his treatment. Treatment was available but not always accessible.

We helped them shape their perspectives of working in emerging economies and future product strategies with clear, rich cultural insights and feedback.

This project was the beginning of a series of projects I worked with CIID and Novo Nordisk as it spawned many ideas to future products, services and the more profound role they could play in helping diabetics cope with their condition beyond insulin delivery.

Read my travelogue here