​Design Jam: Community Engagement for Civic Innovation


City staff facilitating at the Design Jam 

On October 24th, 2015, the OCE hosted a “Design Jam” along with the City’s IT department and Service Brampton.

What’s a Design Jam?
A fun, interactive event where participants design products or services that will meet the end-user's needs.  Over the course of a few hours, participants brainstorm, discuss project challenges, choose an idea to test, and develop a 3D prototype of their idea using materials like Play Dog, pipe cleaners, and foam.

Participants draw on their diverse skillsets and personal experiences to collaboratively design services or products that will best meet the needs of the end-user.
What happened at this Design Jam?
City of Brampton staff collaborated with Brampton residents with expertise in fields like technology, design, business, the creative arts, and more! Attendees collaborated with City of Brampton staff on two projects:
  • Development of an online community engagement platform
  • Implementation of an online self-service portal to access City services

Design Jam participants brainstorming ideas for an online self-service portal

Design Jam results
The OCE, IT, and Service Brampton are very pleased with the positive feedback we received, and we are excited to use the suggestions we received to improve our projects. Staff’s key takeaways for each project were:
Online Community Engagement Platform
  • Key technical features:
    • Mobile-friendly
    • SMS/email “push” notifications 
  • Simple, user-friendly design
  • Must allow direct contact between public and staff/Council
  • City should do more to engage residents on existing social media platforms
Online Self-Serve Portal
  • Platform should suggest services to users based on their account activity
  • Must have social integration and "push" notifications
  • Open Data API
  • Developer Blog to help IT staff come up with user-focused solutions
The OCE looks forward to holding many more events like this in the future to connect with you on matters of importance to the community.