The co-design project team

Who is involved in a co-design team?

Co-design generally involves the people who are likely to be impacted by (or will benefit from) the process or service. They are also motivated to transform knowledge into innovative solutions to improve outcomes.

Co-design is inherently a team-based process; with all team members making full use of one another’s knowledge, resources and contributions to achieve better outcomes or improved efficiency in product or service design.

Watch the following video and consider how you will address and work to balance power across your project team.

Balancing power

Starting assumptions

  • The members of the co-design team will be a diverse group of individuals who are unlikely to have worked together before.
  • There will be a diversity of “roles” in the group, including staff, consumers and others.
  • The project is likely to have been initiated by the health service provider, although this is not always the case.
  • There is likely to be minimal (or no) prior exposure to the co-design process or the behaviours that support this process.

Members will either be:

  • enthusiastic for the change proposed and their inclusion in the project (this is ideal)


  • expected to be involved in the group by management (this is not ideal).

Roles involved in a co-design team

Co-design lead or facilitator

This role will require an in-depth knowledge of co-design and is responsible for facilitating and leading the project or process. Ideally, a co-design project will have co-leads (a staff member and consumer). These roles play a key ‘coaching’ role in building mindsets across a co-design team.

People with lived experience

These are individuals who have personally experienced a service, role or condition; or they are a carer or family member supporting the person who has. Consideration should be given to the number of participants involved to ensure there is a balanced representation of consumers and staff.

Staff (clinical and non-clinical)

Staff working in the service or affected by the co design process can be involved. This can include subject matter expertise as a clinician or health manager.

Executives and sponsors

This is likely to be a senior team member who will sponsor, enable and endorse the co-design process. This individual is unlikely to be part of the team; however, their support is critical to the sustainability of the project.

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