Citizen
A platform to fast-track political awareness for first-time voters.

DATE

Feb. 2019

FOCUS

UX Research

Design Sprint

Rapid Prototyping

Interface Design

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Introduction

This work is a product of following one of the design briefs provided by the RSA Student Design Awards.

Brief - Design a solution that harnesses digital tools to increase the quantity and quality of citizens’ participation in democratic processes.

Brief Analysis & Framework

With help from my mentor, Saumya Kharbanda, I was able to set first-time voters as the target group and identify a broad framework for an inquiry into the Indian political sphere.

3E Framework - Encourage, Engage, Empower.

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User Interviews & Insights

The next step was to create a road-map for interviewing urban first-time voters. All questions were inclined towards finding their political interest against political awareness.

Here are some of the leading insights - 

  • A sense of responsibility piques political interest.

  • Family leaves political impressions.

  • Feels political awareness is time-consuming.

  • Facebook is a passive news touch-point.

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Running with the Insights

These insights informed the next step of defining specific objectives and goals. Next, I gathered my peers (also first-time voters) to help me prioritize them by voting.

After prioritizing, I brainstormed and generated 3-4 solutions for each of the objectives. The idea here was to generate first, and critique later.

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Mapping the Solutions

To critique the generated rough ideas, I mapped them out on an Impact-Effort graph. The value against the effort required to build the solution before elections (April 2019).

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Selected Concept - A platform to present long Q&A videos of politicians in a direct, digestible, and interactive format. 

Encouraging the “question-asking” notion of students, this idea also meets two of the above defined objectives-

  • Shift focus from hard facts to perspectives.

  • Challenge time-consuming nature of politics.

User Journey & Testing

To give this concept more structure, I followed three steps to go from a macro to a micro view.

  • Macro flow to layer the 3E framework.

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  • Micro flow to identify primary and secondary userflow.

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  • Usability testing with target group.

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Rapid Wireframes

After articulating questions that users might have at each step of the flow, I initiated the wireframing process, again following the generate first, critique later method.

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Interface and Functionality

The final translation of the UI from wireframes happened over multiple iterations that revolved around the identity, functionality, hierarchy, and features of the platform.

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  • Filtration to close-in on interests.

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  • Citizen Dictionary to fill knowledge gaps.

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  • Video pop-up to switch medium.

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The Take-aways
  • Design can address issues like politics, if you're willing.

  • Impact-Effort graph accelerates decision making.

  • Solutions generate when you have clear objectives.

  • When in doubt, strategically ask the user for help.

  • Build and impulsively initiate testing.

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