Are You a Good Driver? How Designers Use Data to Get to the Truth

Stories from IDEO designers about the intersection of data and human-centered design.

Sensors, cameras and open data sets mean we’re learning more about people’s behaviour than ever before. That’s reshaping the design and innovation process.

Ask car-owning Londoners to rate their driving, and nine out of ten will tell you they’re either ‘good’, or ‘very good’. Record people’s driving behaviour, and a different picture emerges. It will come as no surprise to anyone who’s driven in a city recently that ‘good’ and ‘very good’ drivers are much less common than people’s self-reporting would suggest.

So what’s happening here? Why do people consistently overestimate their driving ability? As a designer, I want to know: should I design products and services for how they think they drive, or how they actually drive?

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