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Service Design Specialism | Project Report Qin Lu, M.Des inDesign Innovation & Service Design | Stage2, 2018

INTRODUCTION Hi, this is Qin Lu, a service design student study in GSA. This project was undertaken by Lorenz Herfurth and Iain Reid as the part of MDes Design Innovation and Service design course at The Glasgow School of Art. In this service design specialism course, Megan, Xuanyu, Louis and I study together as a co-design team to do the project work relates to the library service re-design. The focus of this project is to analyse the existing services in library by engaging and interacting with people there. Then using the feedback and data to re-design a library service. As the final outcome, we designed an additional branch for the public library service in Glasgow, called The Co-Learning Space as part of ‘GlasgowLife’ which are opportunities run by Glasgow city council. Following I will detail introduce you the 10-week project process.

CONTENT Critique and analysis Understand







- Field research - General user journey - Stakeholder map of TML

- Mapping key services - Engaging with stakeholders - User groups

- Personas - Specific user journey

- Co- Des

Perspectives on service design Desk research Facts and trends Stakeholder maps

Re-design Outcome






-design workshop sign opportunities

- Frustrations& potentials - Function board

- The co-learning space - Platform

- Service blueprint

- New usr journey

What is service design?

Perspectives on service design Co-creation

Role of service designers

Desk research



hen I think about a service around my daily life, I can find numerous service areas from commercial, social and political aspects. However, from my own interests, I would like to inquire into more about the services for the general public from the vary age brackets, such as, museum, library, and train stations. Then, as a group, we decided to focus on the library service. As it is very accessible to the place, users and stakeholders. We started our process by looking into why libraries exist, and how they thrive in cities. From our research, we found that libraries exist as a multidimensional space in the digital age and can be seen as “third places” for the communities social, educational and multiple other needs. Today, libraries intersect with the sharing economy in a number of ways, from breaking barriers in the types of resources exchanged to the use of technology to broker the sharing. We continued to think about the way library spaces might be used to encourage shared and creative activity while continuing to welcome those who want to explore on their own.

(Theory mapping activity)


t the very beginning of the course, everyone was asked to read one article related Service design, the article I was assigned was <Emerging issue in service design>. This article lists six contemporary issues in service design, such as establishing complex service networks, scaling up local community-based solutions, embedding design within organizations or commensuration of value in service design. One of these issues mentions an artist, Alison Prendiville (University of the Arts London), she highlights the intricate connection of ‘place’ with human experience and with the way individual define themselves: “To live is to live locally, and to know is first of all to know the places one is in”. This opinion highly inspires and guides me during the following design process.

Moreover, we found that the number of public library visits made in the United Kingdom from 323 million visits in 2002/03 down to 282 million library visits in 2013/14 and we wanted to look into why this was and how we could bring more people back into using libraries, especially in terms of current advances in technology and how we could integrate an older population into this concept. In order to better understand the existing library service system, we made two stakeholder maps from different perspectives. It clearly shows us the people involved in the whole service system, by this way, we can prepare for the further interactions with them.

Daniela Sangiorgi & Sabine Junginger (2015) Emerging Issues in Service Design, The Design Journal, 18:2, 165-170 Marquez, J. & Downey A. (2015). Service Design: Toward a Holistic Assessment of the Library. PNLA Quarterly, 80 (1).


An existing service

Facts and trends

Stakeholder map EXTERNAL


libraries in local communities across Glasgow


year olds are consistently the highest users in terms of age


of all public access computer users found the library's computers and interent connection extremely valuable

The population in the UK is getting older with

18% aged 65 and over and 2.4% aged 85 and over. Reaching over 74 million by 2039.



Affiliated Libraries

College Libraries





â&#x20AC;&#x153;sharing economyâ&#x20AC;? became popularized.


users thought that books to read and borrow were the most important service.




Libraries the way to digital citizenship.

: Government NAL O I T NA SS: Donors, Vend NE or I s S : Volunteers Y BU T I UN M L: NA O Library users PER S

963.3m British

The term


Library staff Community

2015/16, governmental spending on public libraries spending reached


(students, public...) Library employees Staffs Faculty Everyone can access

Field work 1st library visiting

The Mitchell Library

GoMA Library

UoG Library

Research method: observation card

GSA Library

Data collection


rom the previous desk research, we found that there are many different types of library in Glasgow, such as public library, student library, children’s library, academic library… We chose four libraries in Glasgow to do the first filed research, they are two public libraries and two student libraries. Because we expect to discover the differences between the different types of library and find out their internal relevance, irrelevance and pain points. We prepared some observation cards for the research, and noted the data to measure demographics, observations and moods of the areas. The most interesting thing I found is the users in public library are most elderly people, some of them chat with friends in the café of library and some of them use the PC for web visiting or film watching. Furthermore, there are some students studying which surprized me, as I thought they could use their own school library. It feels like we are in some community hall but not a traditional library on my mind. For this time visiting, we aim to note what we seen and what we felt. So, we didn’t want to disturb people there, just had a generally short chat with the library staff.

Following are our key findings across all libraries: - Multiple users took part in multiple touchpoints in the library, from students taking advantage of the quiet space to business people using the office spaces and the general public using the space to sleep. - The libraries offer a large variety of services beyond knowledge distribution - Moods varied from hushed and studious to sociable and excited depending on the area and type of library.


General user journey

- physical guide board - signs

- Book chek machine - Library card - student card - printer

Entering Feelings: bus

y, n ois y. so cia l

n tio a p

n Feelings: exciting, sad, bu o i t sy, str ara es p se e d, a Pr

Check-in - self-assistant - staffs help - printing

- physical lifts/stairs

General user journey in The Mitchell Library

Space/area - cafe - study room - theater - play area - toilet - meeting room - smoking area - silent space - book aisles - reading room - PC area

Facilities - serch machine - magazines - PC/laptop - Books - furnitures - printers - vending machine - maps - film scanning machine - charging points


Scotish government

frontstage Tech providers


rsonal use rs Pe Coding community

Maintaince staffs 3rd party exhibition organization and events

Library managers




Librarians Gift shop staffs

Intangible services

Volunteers Macmillan support

Reception staffs Cafe staffs

Transportation - driving - walking - biking - bus/train/tram - scooter - skate

Pack-out - collecting beloings - Logout - charge card

Check-out - use card to go out - check out books

Catering provider (food and 3rd party)

- WIFI - A/C - social aspect

Play area organization

Stakeholder map of The Mitchell Library


Disability provider

Theatre staffs

Other users


Local investors d,

Motivation: - study - meeting - leisure - social

Library card student card security tag CCTV

Feelings: trust, q u i e t, so cia l, s t ud io us

Preparation - belongings - charging card - check time - research


Stairs/lifts - posters - advertisement - guides - info desk - bin

nt ic i

Recrption staff

Security system - Barriers

ess Acc

libary staff general public: - students - elderly - children - office workers - young adults - middle aged - disabled

PCs leaflets posters maps

sa tis fi e ,t ire d


Guide board - info on floors - layout overview - directions - fire exit - current location - forbidden signs

ing Feelings: accom plis Leav he

Reception - reception desk - info guide - password/ ID - Book shop - PC assistance

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Glasgow Librariesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;

Glasgow Life

Stakeholders engagement 2nd library visiting

Feedback Target group 65+ year-old

Research method: Interview

Top services: 1.PC 2.Reception 3.Cafe 4.giftshop 5.Lift


t this time visiting, we only went to The Mitchell Library to interview people and ask them the questions. As the aim of ice breaking, we made the services circle map to emphasize the cyclic nature of people coming and then returning to the library and surrounded it with common touch points we found from our desk research and observations. These were then divided by age: 65+, 41-64 and under the age of 41.


At the beginning of the interview, we ask them to draw a little dot around the services they used most frequently in the library. By this way, it can be easily seen which service people used most in the different age bracket. And then according to the following questions, we collected more specific opinions and reasons from users.

Emerging group 41-64 year-old

Top services: 1.Books 2.Cafe 3.PC

Comparing group under 40

Top services: 1.Laptop 2.charging 3.Cafe

e gathered 20 feedbacks from our 20 interviewees.

For elderly, the services they used most are PC, reception, café, gift shop and lift. Most of them are the regular customer, they come to the library very often. But the reason might be different, sometimes, they come to use PC as they can seek help from Digi-pal anytime. And they also come for a social purpose to meet friend in the café, as the very convenient location and disabled friendly facilities.


For middle age, the services they used most are books, café and PC. The reason they come to the library is for a temporarily escape from their work. Or just for enjoying their weekend with their family, as the library provides the family history research service to the public.

- Age? - What kind of service/facility you use the most frequently? - How often you come here? - What purpose do you come here for? - Do you consider the library a social or private space? - Do you have any problems with the library service?

For young age people, the service they used most are laptop, charging, café. It is obviously seen that they use the library more like a café store. Additionally, we noticed there are some young Digi-pal working on teaching and helping the people here have digital problem as the volunteer.


Persona Margaret


70-year-old regtired female lives in Glasgow

40-year-old an office worker works in the city centre

She meets her friends at Cafe in Mitchell library, as she enjoys the atmosphere. Sometimes, she can go the exhibition and events there with her friends. She enjoys the social aspect of meeting people there. When she accesses the PC in the library, staff will help her as she doesn’t have access to wifi or a PC at home. It is also free. She can also take chance to read books in quiet space, and she borrows books from reception via the borrow /returns machine. She is a grandma and sometimes, she would go to the gift shop in lib to buy cards for her grandchildren. However, one of her friends, Sarah has hearing problem, so she cannot access some services in the library.

He is employed in the financial industry. Whilst in the libray he notices someone on ‘jobseeker Scotland’ next to him. He uses the library as an ‘escape’ from his work pressures/ home life. He adores to access online services to do personal research into his interests in Ancenstor. He always takes books away from library. He enjoys coming to the cafe for a break or to have a chat. He also likes music, and sometimes he would use the practice spaces in the library. He likes library staff there as there is a good social culture there.

Specific user journey: Margaret’s social day with Helen

1) Margaret takes the bus with

her senior bus pass, she wouldn’t go to the library if the location wasn’t convenient.

2) At the reception, margaret uses her library card to check in some books as she doesn’t know how to use the self returns machine.

3) Margaret asks the staff to help her go to the computer and log in. She wants to check her emails and the facebook account her granddaughter set up for her as she deson’t have a computer of wigfi at home.

4) She takes the lift to the cafe as her legs hurt today.

9) Helen then browses the 6) She bumps into her

friend Helen who is hard of sight.

7) They go and browse

some books together but Helen goes to the audiobooks section.

8) After saying goodbye to Helen, Margaret takes her books to the reception to check them out and look at events going on in the library.


gift shop whilst waiting for her bus.

5) Margaret goes to the cafe for a lunch and hopefully someone will be up for a chat.

7) Margaret then takes the bus home.

Co-design Workshop

Key Insights


Library visitors

Library users

Library staffs

What if the Mitchell library as a

e conducted our third visiting in the Mitchell Library as ‘Co-design’ with stakeholders. The main questions we wanted to identify is “what kind of role the library play as the 3rd place?” The key functions we considered can be a social space, a skill learning place or provide the job opportunities which can satisfy elderly’s needs. But, by which way we can connect these services together? Is there a new service system library can provide to the elderly users? We talked with the library users, the most important services they think are informal/casual/comfortable setting space as a second ‘Home’, they don’t like the extremely quiet library vibe as it makes them feel isolated. From the view of library staffs, they think it might be helpful to build a strong social network which connect the people with different age and background come together for sharing or exchanging value purpose. We also talked with two Digi-pals, who are the senior students. The reason they said they work there as volunteers are not just for beautifying their CV for job seeking, but also, they found it is valuable to help elderly study hard skills, as they can gain some soft skills from the elderly as exchange. The young generation might be good at some hard skills than the elderly, but the elderly could handle some soft skills which based on the life experiences better.


thrid place for...?

Would you prefer this space to have a formal or informal environment? Would you like this space to be open weekly or open everyday? Would you prefer this space to be free or pay a small fees to cover costs such as tea and coffee, etc? Would you be comfortable being taught by someone that had a disability or was a job seeker? Would you rather treat this space as a workshop or a defined class? Would you want to learn more than just technological skills in this space? Do you have any other comments or questions as to how we can improve this concept?



Opportunities -


Informal space social network Second ‘HOME’ Ice breakers Advice Family history Noise not necessarily bad Care community TEA/coffee

soft skills VS hard skills Digipal project Free/low cost How to send E-mail Using a keyboard Fear of technology Device provision Navigation online

Voluntary Co-tecach-learn system Taught by students Teenagers Jobs through library Increase in job opportunity Employability Library to promote Low tuition




Alternative help sources,both soft and hard skills Informal/ casual/ comfortable setting “HOME” Tuition for computer/technology/skills/data privacy(subjective) Not school class, but social activities 1-4 students in one group Teachers can be only bracket Co-learning opportunities for tutors + users Free enter space (Non-profit) Location in library and community halls Visibility through library and other public sources Class times interchangeable, different once per week Reward system? Sharing economy ...

(The visualized Function board of our potential service is on the next page)


Opportunities Frustrations and potentials 1. Demographic shift: Aging population Based on the previous researches, we can see the elderly people is the main patron of the public library. But a large part of them is left behind by the digital age. The fact is that the population of the UK has undergone a fundamental change in its age structure, with many people having fewer children and living longer lives. In order to make the life of older generation feeling more valuable and release the job market pressure, the public library can provide them easy job training.

3. Libraries in the ‘Sharing Economy’ The term “sharing economy” became popularized, in most countries, Millennials almost take the “sharing economy” for granted. The report shows the sharing economy is helping to save – or even create – money and time for consumers, and may even help those with less money the most. Under this situation, we start thinking how the concept of sharing economy can be utilized by libraries by creating innovative services to reach out to people? Sharing your experiences? Sharing your stories? Talking to people they wouldn't normally meet?

2. Public Library as the ‘third-place’ next to home and workplace The office workers come to the library for a short relax which let them escape from their family and work. The retired elderly come to the library as their social space and also a learning space. The young generation comes to library for group study, volunteer project or meeting. The role of the modern public library is transforming from reading to the social community hub. As such social hub, the public library holds a large number of people every day. How can the public library provide a more meaningful function?

4. Bidirectional volunteer system Connecting retirees who are keen to contribute and share their experience with the young generation, and building bridges between their knowledge gap. Through an exchange-value system, the Digi-pal teach their hard skills with elderly, and elderly teach the young Digi-pal their soft skills which based on their life experiences in exchange.


Re-designed service The co-learning space

T he (Glasgow) Co-Learning Space is a community that revolves around engaging the elderly post-retirement and older workers (65+) with younger recent

graduates to offer the ability to co-learn and practice new soft and hard skills. This project is hypothetically run by the Glasgow City Council and as one of the â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;GlasgowLifeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; ventures. This space is intended to create a skill sharing economy between generations to engage the community, allow participants involved in as both participants and teachers, create a social space and encourage the informal practice of skill exchange as well as prepare both young and old for entry into the job market.


This project will be designed as a platform which can be accessed, and sessions can be applied to online, but paper applications will also be available in the local spaces such as the library for those that donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have access to the internet. After applying, applicants will be matched according to skill sets and outcomes expected to be taught most effectively and the sessions will be free and offer an informal coffee/ tea setting. Notifications are then sent out through the platform via social media, email, text or through the post notifying of reminders of the session, the location, the theme and the hours. To take place bi-weekly in a public space such as that of a room in a library, of a pre-booked school hall, of a community hall and similar, the session will involve both a structured section run by a voluntary tutor (those with a disability / unemployed are also encouraged if interested) and an informal section in which social and informal sharing is encouraged.

Learning Teaching

An online system via Glasgow Libraries App and website.

Skills being taught are soft and hard: Soft skill includes: Communication skill, Interpersonal skill, Positive attitude, Courtesy, Work ethic, Self-expression, Time management et, Hard skill includes: Technological skills, CV writing skills et,


Learning Teaching





Poster; leaflets; social media; reception desk

Finds and understands about our service

Website; library reception

Sign up in online website. Sign up in library reception.

Physical/digital forms

Create and match profile by filling out personal information form.

E-mail; SMS; GL app

Selects a session and Confirms

Website; paper info

Goes to attend the session



Course physical material

GL App; Text message; Email

Displays; coffee/tea

Small group co-learning.

Gets an introduction

Finishing their session

AFTER GL App; Text message; Email; Paper info.

Plans for next session

Feedback cards; Online review

Write feedbacks.



Social media and poster advertising about the Co-learning space events.

On-line: Registration confirmation

Off-line: Staff in reception introduce our service to people and help them to fill out the application form.

Recieving notification about the matching result.

Registration confirmation; Welcome message

Greet applicants

Volunteer introduce the session

Tutor starts by presentation of sharing experience, then Q&A, end by informal social chatting time.

Applicants Receive a notification, text or email about their Class attendance

Further interaction with selected sessions

Ask participants to write feedbacks and distribute feedback sheet



Post Link ads on social media, pamphlets, posters.

Design online system and paper application form

System matches applicants according to their skill sets

Application process still running;

Send Welcome message

Volunteers prepare their topic

Notification to engage applicants discovering further sessions

Collect feeaback to provide better service



Create a marketing / financde plan

Registration process online and offline

Glasgow libraries platfrorm support online enagement



Train volunteers or offer them the opportunity to part

Glasgow libraries platfrorm support online and offline enagement



Finds and understands about “the co-learning space”.

Sign up in online website.

Create and match profile by filling out personal information form.




Selects a session and Confirms

Goes to attend the session on time

Gets a course introduction and course brief

Small group co-learning.

Finishing their session

Plans for next session

Write feedbacks.

“These courses are exactly what I need!”

“I don’t want to be late.”

“Wow! This course is amazing!”

“Really happy to meet these people here.”

“It was too short, I should ask for further contact.”

“I want to attent the next session course.”

“I will recommend my friends come here.”

ACTIONS Sign up in library reception.


“I want to know more about it.” “What is this?”

“Looks intersting, I should have a try.”

“Why I have to fill out so many quetions?”



Attracted Empathic Surprised Annoyed, Disturbed

Interested Unsufficient




Poster; leaflets; social media

APP/Website; library reception

Physical/digital forms

email/text; APP/Website

Transportatin; sign-in sheet


Display, course material


GL App; Text message; Email.

GL App; Text message; Email; Paper info.

Feedback sheet

REFLECTION During this ten-week course, I had a deeper and wider understanding of the discipline of service design, both theoretically and practically. By starting with critical analyse an existing service area, and then to the field research, stakeholder interactions. In the live research, we conducted a variety of research methods and analytical methods. Which gave me a different perspective to enquire into and interpret the service touchpoints, so then help me to identify the potential opportunities and generate the final concept. However, there were some limitations which made our final work not good enough. Firstly, the work time is limited. As our group members are in the different studio project groups. The meeting time always overlap with NHS project. Although we have spent our weekend time to do the research. There are still some elements of the concept which we were not explored as they could have been, and could be developed further, such as prototyping and user testing. Moreover, our team work went not very well. As not everybody contributed equally. How to balance the division of tasks within the group is a big challenge to us. And also, we need to ensure every team member has passion on this. In the future study, I will be more honest to express my thoughts and manage the time better. In the end, I want to special thanks to: Our tutors Lorenz and Iain, who gave us many helpful suggestions and feedback, which guided us the direction during the whole process. The Mitchell library staffs, I am so appreciated that they spent so much time talk with us and offered us the great insights. And the people we engaged with in the live research, they are very patient to help us develop our ideas by telling us their experiences, habits and feelings.

Service design in the mitchell library  

Service Design Specialism

Service design in the mitchell library  

Service Design Specialism