Published online by Cambridge University Press: 26 July 2019
Prototyping as a central method within innovation- and product development processes has a high acceptance in industry. Various prototyping tools provide impressive visualizations of product ideas in early development stages and especially low fidelity prototyping methods seem easily applicable. However, a closer look at prototyping in practice reveals a number of misunderstandings and barriers regarding effective prototyping, often related to different stakeholders’ (e.g., developer, designer, client) ideas about the purpose of prototyping. Based on a combination of literature analysis, adapting existing models and methods in user centered design (e.g., personas, double diamond design process) and empirical results from industrial research cooperation, we introduce a focus group format and a first model of prototyping maturity, which can help organizations to reflect on their state of practice in prototyping on an individual, team, and organizational level. The maturity model also forms a valuable theoretical lens for design research. Thus, our research aims at researchers in the field of prototyping as well as practitioners involved in prototyping and innovation processes.