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Strategy & Research

Shifting Behavior in Cancer Research


Nikki Bussard

Blue Cuevas

Andrea Everman

Roberto Faller

Urba Mandrekar




A project with a prominent cancer research institution* in New York

*The name of the cancer research institution is removed to protect their privacy

Problem Space

Data Sharing - What makes people want to share their data and build value and trust?

Sustained Engagement - What services can maintain a meaningful longitudinal relationship with mutual benefits?

Risk Reframing - What are ways that can address, mitigate and reduce customer risk and how do they engage people’s perception of risk?

Hub Services Creation - How are offerings and services bundled up from separate experiences into one strong partnerships?

We tackled these by understanding what other companies are currently doing and how they are addressing these challenges. We did this by learning and analyzing their best practices and how we can bring those in into our thinking.

Key Insights and Principles

Using the insights and best practices we've gathered from our research, we identified key principles that can help us design a new way of engaging people to help prevent cancer.


Cancer Treatment

Cancer Treatment


Cancer Prevention

How might we help enable a world with no cancer?


By providing an arc of services that engages with families and communities from the moment of cancer awareness through to prevention, treatment, and management of disease.

Possible Solution

By keeping in mind the principles we've laid out, we designed an experience made up of different touch points for people to engage with the cancer research institution. This is not an end-all solution but a way to think how bundling a system of services might look like.

This is Helios and this is how it works.

Analysis: After we've compiled the key information from the interviews into case studies, we discussed as a team, the learnings from each into insights and then clustered these insights to have a better picture of the design principles that we are trying to achieve.

Communication: This is very important since the client we were working with is in a different city, we made sure that our line of communication is always open. We had check points laid out during the entire project and we traveled twice to present our findings and final recommendations.

The final presentation of our project along with a set of recommendations that we provided for future projects in the company.

Cancer is not a topic that should be taken lightly and to encourage or change people’s behavior towards it is a challenge that this cancer research institution is facing. We were tasked to help design strategies that aim to create new experiences for people to engage with this cancer research institution. These challenges focus on 4 main topics:

Form our primary and secondary research, we were able to isolate key insights that we think are valuable to moving forward with the exploration of new service experiences. These insights are:

A little bit of our process

Primary and Secondary Research: After designing an interview protocol for our participants, we conducted several interviews with people from different companies, learning about the best practices around the 4 topics that we are exploring (Data Sharing, Sustained Engagement, Risk Reframing, Hub Services). Each member of our team was assigned a number of companies to contact and interview. We then compiled all the information we gathered into case studies for an easier comprehension. 

Synthesis: After thorough review of our findings, insights, and feedback from the client, we started mapping out a service system that touches on all our design principles and create a narrative around it. This is to prepare us for our final presentation in New York.