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Conceptual Design is an early phase of the design process, in which the broad outlines of function and form of something are articulated. It includes the design of interactions, experiences, processes and strategies. It involves an understanding of people's needs - and how to meet them with products, services, & processes. Common artifacts of conceptual design are concept sketches and models.
Since the emergence of design thinking as a vehicle for business and research development, many conventionally trained aesthetic designers have wrongly been called upon to support organizations with workshops pertaining specifically to business or process development in the incorrect assumption that all design is equal in this capacity. This has resulted in a large shadow being cast over the role of design in business and development and questions being asked about the value of design as a tool for business and research development.