Ekaterina Kotina

Do design cognition processes overlap with effective strategic decision-making processes in companies, and what potential role do they play in strategic decision-making?

Ekaterina is a PhD candidate studying with the Institute for Design Innovation and is interested in effective strategic decision-making processes in companies.

Ekaterina obtained her first master's degree in Public Relations in Business from St. Petersburg State University, in Russia. Following completion of her first master's, she began working in different industries including the entertainment, computer games, biotechnology and life sciences industies. Her first role was as a public relations specialist, before progressing onto the role of business development manager then director of strategic planning.

Ekaterina has been involved in the launch of start-up companies in the life sciences and biotechnology sectors in Russia, the USA and Finland. She has led international R&D consortiums and worked with Tekes, Skolkovo, and other funding organisations, whilst also establishing biotechnology premise in Finland. Ekaterina then obtained an MSc in Economics and Business Administration from Aalto School of Business, in Helsinki, Finland, and specialised in International Design Management. She is now working towards obtaining her PhD with the Institute for Design Innovation.

PhD research description

Ekaterina's interest is in strategic decision-making processes in companies and the potential role of design cognition in strategic decision-making. Her research aim is to understand whether design cognition processes overlap with cognition processes in effective strategic decision-making and what role design cognition processes play in strategic decision-making.

The research question therefore is as follows: do design cognition processes overlap with effective strategic decision-making processes in companies, and what potential role do they play in strategic decision-making? In particular, Ekaterina is interested in analogical reasoning. Reuse of knowledge (from specific previous design projects) through analogical reasoning has been observed in many cognitive design studies as a central approach in design. Analogical reasoning is used for different aims, including problem formulation, problem-solving, and uncertainty resolution. Analogical reasoning is also studied in business, and Ekaterina would like to analyse and compare its role in design studies and business studies and apply studied design perspectives to strategic decision-making in companies.

PhD supervisors

Ekaterina's PhD is supervised within The Institute for Design Innovation.

Papers, publications and articles

Kotina E., Koria M., Prendeville S. (2017). Using Design Thinking to improve Strategic Decisions during Collaborative Sensemaking. Conference Proceedings of Design Management Academy Conference, Hong Kong, 6-9 June.

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