By Alan Murray and David Meyer
March 8, 2018

Good morning from Singapore (where it is now evening.)

One of the striking things about the discussions here at Brainstorm Design over the last three days is how frequently they have turned to the same topic that underlies so many discussions at our annual Brainstorm Tech event in Aspen—corporate culture. The über-question that permeates both goes something like this:

In a world of rapidly accelerating change, where technology threatens to remake almost every aspect of every company in every industry, how do large corporations, built for predictability and stability, adapt and innovate fast enough to survive and thrive?

Technology is the driving force behind that change and uncertainty, but design is emerging as a means of addressing that change and uncertainty. “Design thinking,” first popularized by consulting firm Ideo and Stanford’s “d.school,” is increasingly taking hold in companies as a means of driving culture change and innovation. “Managing is about making decisions,” explained Christian Bason of the Danish Design Center, but design “is about creating the options to make decisions about.”

Phil Gilbert, who heads design at IBM, put it this way: “Beautiful products and experiences are why companies dabbled in design initially, but it didn’t stick. What we are finding now is design’s ability to tame more potent fractures (in large organizations)…. So many people have to be involved throughout the development of any new product and service, and there is a systemic need for speed and decision-making at speed. There is no other system, other than the design process, that deals with that chaos.”

You can read more about Brainstorm Design here. We’ll be returning to Singapore next year to continue the discussion. I would recommend it to anyone struggling with the process of creative innovation—which these days is just about everyone in business.

News below. And thanks to all those careful readers who noticed yesterday’s typo. The tax cut was $1.5 trillion.

Alan Murray
@alansmurray
alan.murray@fortune.com

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