All teams in the Tiger Challenge use design thinking, a methodology that unlocks empathy, creativity, collaboration and open-mindedness. Design thinking is a body of techniques for human-centered problem solving that includes a step-by-step process, a suite of tools, and a few orienting mindsets. Every team is highly supported, receiving the training, mentorship, space, and resources necessary to do this crucial work well.

Phases of the Tiger Challenge


Through interviews and observation of end-users and other stakeholders, teams learn from the people with whom they are designing and are inspired by opportunities for design.

The core mindset of this phase is empathic reasoning, thus teams interview stakeholders not only about their topics, but also about stakeholders' values, attitudes, beliefs and expectations. This helps build a rich picture of people and cultures.


By exploring themes, patterns, and asymmetries in the qualitative data, teams articulate key insights and opportunities for design that might unlock impactful innovations.

The core mindset of this phase is abductive reasoning, the ability to generate hypotheses from observation, analysis, and intuition.


Using the insights and design opportunities as springboards, teams brainstorm hundreds of ideas and then develop core concepts that are viable, feasible, and desirable.

The core mindset in this phase is creative confidence. Teams encourage their partners and stakeholders to think big in developing truly innovative possibilities.


Teams create low-fidelity prototypes of the concepts they have developed, test them with stakeholders, and rapidly iterate based on their findings and feedback.

The core mindset in this phase is being hypothesis-driven. Teams get their nascent concepts out in front of stakeholders quickly in order to test assumptions and incorporate feedback.


Teams conduct a pilot of their designs along with an impact evaluation, both measuring intended effects and monitoring for unintended outcomes. 

The core mindset of this phase is courage. Teams become champions for the concepts they co-designed (while still observing, and iterating throughout).