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The Double Diamond

From humble beginnings to a cornerstone of design language.

The Double Diamond is a visual representation of the design and innovation process. It’s a simple way to describe the steps taken in any design and innovation project, irrespective of methods and tools used.

Creative Commons Licence The Double Diamond by the Design Council is licensed under a CC BY 4.0 license.


"It's not an instruction manual on how to design, it's an invitation to get involved."

Tim Browne, Co-Chair at IDEO

Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Double Diamond.

  • Richard Eisermann Design Council’s previous Director of Design and Innovation, wrote a piece questioning whether the Double Diamond was still fit for purpose. Read it on Medium
  • We've collaborated with Mural to publish the Double Diamond as a digital workspace template. Get the template
  • How do you use the Double Diamond? Jonathan Ball, one of the original founders, explains it.

The history of the Double Diamond

In 2003, the Design Council was promoting the positive impact of adopting a strategic approach to design and the value of ‘design management’ as a practice. However, they had no standard way of describing the supporting process.

Richard Eisermann, Design Council’s then Director of Design and Innovation, thought that this was incompatible with their broader message, so he asked his team, “How do we describe design process?”

Deconstructing a common process

"The team put in the work trying to define design, process, methods, etc. What we did with the Double Diamond was codify it, rename the steps and popularise it. It was important work, but we were certainly standing on the shoulders of giants." Richard Eisermann


Evolving with the Framework for Innovation

Many of the organisations we support learn something more about the underlying problems which can send them back to the beginning of their diamond work. Making and testing very early stage ideas can be part of discovery. And in an ever-changing and digital world, no idea is ever ‘finished’.

So we incorporated those into an expanded Double Diamond with the framework for innovation.