Posts tagged with Topanga Canyon:

Hiking, Design Research-Style

Co-authored by Erin Mays

Who would have thought that a professional design mixer in the scenic Topanga State Park would turn into a case study on group decision-making? I guess that’s what you get when you put 10 designers, strategists and researchers together on a Saturday morning…

This Saturday, we joined a group of co-workers and local design professionals on a hike in LA’s Topanga State Park. After 2.5 miles of uphill hiking, we paused to take in the view at the Parker Mesa Overlook, which on a clearer day would have provided panoramic views from the Pacific Ocean to the San Fernando Valley.

That’s when it happened. On one of the Cliffside benches, we spotted a set of BMW keys, presumably forgot, dropped, or just plain lost.

Our hearts immediately went out to the guy[1] who would soon return to his car only to find himself locked out and unable to return home for a shower. Our group quickly fixated on the lost keys and the dilemma they presented: how best to see them returned to the owner. As a group of trained problem solvers, our instincts took over and we found ourselves asking questions.