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Optimizing public transport in Belgium with service design

Updated: Sep 17, 2020

“Twisted Studio” from Belgium received this years' Service Design Award in the “Non-profit/ Public Sector” Category for their LaMa Project. They worked with the Network of sustainable mobility (Netwerk Duurzame Mobiliteit), which represents 8 smaller organizations in Belgium who fight for the voice of people who use public transport. The Network also represents another organization that fights for the voice of pedestrians. The service designers from “Twisted Studios” explained that they see their clients as a part of the design team and want to help them create their projects bottom-up in order to tackle local mobility issues. “Every mobility issue is unique. Authorities don’t often consult their citizens when they have to find a solution for them”, says one of the founders of the design studio.

“Recently, we helped the client identify challenges and a frame for a training program. The whole process is designed for us to be less involved which might not sound like a good business model to business people, but since then they are still our client. It kind of works”, she added.

While researching the local problems and tackling the issues on street level, the team gave the opportunity to the citizens to recognize themselves in the problems or add new ones. They took the ideas from this workshop and transformed them into tangible solutions with a second workshop. At least two ideas were tested with citizens in every city, participating in the LaMA project. For instance, in Tienen, a parking lot was redesigned. There used to be incidents with pedestrians each morning. After the parking lot was redesigned, the citizens felt a lot safer and there were fewer conflicts between pedestrians. The conclusions from the project were that the challenge and the way of working need to be crystal clear, expertise needs to be integrated at the right time and hierarchy in the city administration should be avoided.

The Service Design Award, which was founded in 2015, is the most prestigious award honoring service design excellence from around the world. Every year the Service Design Network welcomes submissions from professionals and students eager to share the valuable contributions they have made to enrich the practice of service design. All completed entries are evaluated by an international jury of service design experts and judged based on established benchmarks of world-class service design. The benefits of submitting your work are countless, starting from free publicity for your brand, access to a broader audience to vital connections for business growth and credibility. This year’s winners gained international recognition, trophy and winner's badge, the ability to present their project to more than 650 professionals, one-year free membership in the Service Design Network and many more perks and privileges.


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