AIRBNB DEBUTS A TOOLKIT FOR INCLUSIVE DESIGN

  ©DesignStudio

©DesignStudio

“It’s easy for designers to create in a bubble, to design for themselves — especially with the ease of and access to technology,” says Diaz, who is Airbnb's experience research manager. She continues that “it’s incredibly important that we’re thinking about who we are creating [a product] for, how we want them to use it, and why they want to use it.”

To help examine how bias influences our worldview, Airbnb Design has partnered with News Deeply, a journalism startup dedicated to providing in-depth coverage of the world’s most important and underreported stories. Diaz and her team at Airbnb worked with News Deeply to find answers to: "How can you design for everyone without understanding the full picture?"

They developed a toolkit with the focus on the following three areas: “Balance your bias”; “Consider the opposite”; and “Embrace a growth mindset.” It shall help designers to become aware of their biases and how to make sure that they are challenging them and incorporating different perspectives. Each section of the toolkit is broken down into questions, such as “What are my lenses?”; “Who might disagree with what I am desiring?”; or “Who’s someone I’m nervous to talk to about this?”

The idea is to incorporate as many voices into the process as possible for the company to understand who it is designing for and constantly reinvent the standard. “We have to get outside our own heads to design responsibly,” Diaz says.