Volkswagen factory in VolfsburgSince getting involved to service design in the form of advanced courses in autumn 2013, the circle of working experience has been expanding quite quickly through service design research assistant work at the University of Lapland to service design internship at Volkswagen Group in Wolfsburg, Germany. I started my six month internship in the beginning of September 2014 and now I’m part of the Business Innovation Team in the Research department of the Volkswagen Group.

As the previous experience that I have about service design has been strongly connected to university projects, there was a big difference to be seen between the two worlds: business and university. Even though the department where I’m working is a part of research, it is always concept related and outcome focused research; not to just create general rules and methods, but to find a way how to transfer those straight to concepts and business models in order to create a valuable service for users but also to make it as a profitable business for the company.

In the projects that I have been doing in Sinco, I have got used to the mind set that things are done fast and agile, the goal is to explore new tools and methods in the project context and to come up with new concepts that are inspiring and useful for the company that is involved to the project. Here, in alpha order celebrex online now such a big company as Volkswagen AG which consists of 12 sub-brands, the design process is a bit different. As we often are creating services from scratch and not developing existing services, the research and definition of the context takes a big part from the beginning of the project. You also have to look on a wider view, what kind of project is usable for several brands of the group, not just one. There are many things to consider before the concept development itself and therefore the progress of the project is slower than in the university context.

The service design work itself is done often in co-operation with service design agencies depending on the focus of the project. Sometimes you might even have several agencies working on the same project at the same time and then your role as a service designer is more to manage the co-operation and support the process. This means for example preparing and co-facilitating workshops as well as coming up with the results working in a close co-operation with the agencies.

Before starting my internship, I had a quite naïve idea of how the business side of service design looks like. Now I know that there are a lot of things to consider on top of the basic service design knowledge with servicepaths and blueprints. You have to really understand what are the impacts of your project, who are the real stakeholders also internally in the company to make the project happen, and in the end, how do you make money out of it.

Titta Jylkäs
Industrial Design Master student
University of Lapland

Intern at Volkswagen AG
Wolfsburg, Germany


SINCO was in YLE News on Wednesday 18.12.2013. The material was recorded during the case project for Santa Park in Tunteesta arvoa palvelulle (TEKES) -project. These pieces of news summarize well how SINCO has taken shape as a service development tool with companies. (All the pieces of news are in Finnish)
SINCO oli YLE:n uutisissa keskiviikkona 18.12.2013. Materiaali on kuvattu ja äänitetty Santa Park -palvelumuotoiluprojektin aikana, joka on yksi case-tapaus Tunteesta arvoa palvelulle (Tekes) -hankkeessa. Uutispätkissä kiteytyy SINCO:n käyttötavat ja kolmen vuoden aikana muotoutunut toimintamalli yritysten kanssa.

Katso YLE:n Pohjois-Suomen TV-uutisten pätkä SINCO:sta (1:30)

Kuuntele Lapin Radion uutinen (2:22)
Kuuntele Simo Rontin pidempi haastattelu Lapin Radiossa (5:59)
Web-uutinen SINCO:sta yle.fi-sivustolla


Clothing design student Marianna Suhonen used SINCO environment as a research method on her thesis. Her project is an example of the various possibilities SINCO has offered to design students of all fields at the University of Lapland.

“Sinco laboratory was part of my Master’s thesis where I conducted research on Stockmann based private label called Cristelle & Co. Aim was to carry out interactive consumer interviews to find out what is the current image of this brand and whether it is consistent with the original brand strategy set by the company. 



MusicPath is a service design concept designed for Provincial Library of Rovaniemi by a service design student team.  MusicPath is an experiental path which consists of pictures and music in a physical space. The pictures and music are compiled by the staff of the library, and the themes are connected to calendar year, current events, events in Rovaniemi region, history, different music genres, seasons etc.



At the beginning of this year in Oulu, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, the University of Oulu and the Centre for Health and Technology (CHT) started joint SEWEB project in which technical solutions to children’s health and well-being are studied and developed. During this project the aim is to evolve a variety of sensors which can help to observe the behavior of child during school day and also transfer gathered data forward wirelessly. The idea generation and test environment was in this case elementary school, where VTT organized with SINCO a prototyping clinic to children, parents and teachers.



St.Etienne International Design BiennaleAfter the SINCO 2012 seminar we received an invitation to join the International Design Biennale at Saint-Étienne in March, in the experimental ‘Les Labos’ -exhibition of the Biennale that gathered different types of approaches for co-design and living labs. The invitation also posed quite a challenge for SINCO team: this was the first time, that a copy of SINCO prototyping environment was meant to be set up outside Finland. However, all the problems were solved out, and the invitation was accepted.



SINCO is a prototyping environment, which makes use of technology and digital materials in order to make it quicker and easier to create an experience prototype – for example of a service.

SINCO’s service stage is like a stage of a hobbyist theatre – with one exception: there is most of the time no audience – everyone gets to participate in the play. The stage is where service prototypes are built, and then by going through – again and again – iteratively developed. While there are similarities between service prototyping and traditional theatre plays, there are also some differences between these two.

In SINCO during several cases we’ve learned few things that are good to keep in mind, when you want to build technology assisted experience prototypes – or are still planning to build an prototyping environment.



Service Innovation Corner team thanks everyone for the successful year 2012!

SINCO 2012 seminar with the theme of “collaboration and concretizing” gathered 110 service design practitioners, utilizers and academics at Rovaniemi during November 22nd and 23th. During the Research Day on September 21st directed by professor Satu Miettinen, forty post- or undergraduate students and researchers  raised many interesting and timely questions on current research and development of service design field. Topics included common language of service design, the “curse” of methods and the need for getting further from clinical system design to handling emotions of both the customer and customer servant.



Restaurant Hevi’s Deli & Cafe was planning to install a new pizza oven which will be heated up by wood blocks. We believed that a new oven with open fire will change a customer experience considerably.



SINCO 2012 seminar photos

Some photographs from SINCO 2012 seminar are here. We’re still working on gathering & summarizing all the materials produced & presented in the seminar. Meanwhile you can get a quick look of what happened last week’s seminar.