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Technology Updated: 18 Jul 2017

BBVA brings service design global meeting to Madrid

Spain’s capital will for the first time host the Service Design Global Conference (SDGC17), the leading event in service design.

BBVA will be the principal sponsor of the upcoming edition of the Service Design Global Conference, one of the most important meetings of the international design community, which will be held this year in Madrid.

The Service Design Network (SDN), which is organizing SDGC2017, expects over 650 attendees at the event, including designers, academics and presenters from around the world. The principal international design schools will also be represented, including the Istituto Europeo di Design and the Savannah College of Art and Design. These leading design institutions are great promoters of the service design discipline, due to its importance in the conceptualization of new products and services.

The field of service design has come a long way in recent years.  In complex data-based environments and information systems, where users have to navigate between different channels, service design allows connecting and giving meaning to these relationship moments, also known as touchpoints, between companies and their customers.

In this sense, the most pioneering institutions have become aware of the importance of the experiences that their services deliver. "If they generate customer value, this will positively impact business results," said Rob Brown, BBVA’s head of Marketing, Design & Responsible Business.

Brown recalled that the origins of service design can be traced to the public sector. In recent years, sectors such as finance, telecommunications and retail started adopting these practices.  Since then, design and the area known as 'service design', have become a key part of building customer relationship models.  He said: “BBVA is a clear example of the integration of design at a strategic level within the organization, where its role has evolved quickly and has resulted in the creation of the first global and multidisciplinary team.”


SDGC2017 has become one of the most important forums of the design sector, allowing designers and experts to share experiences and new lessons in the field. “An event of this kind is the perfect environment for learning, networking and exchanging experiences with the largest community of designers in the world. We’re delighted to join the SDN in showcasing the enormous contribution that service design has made in our daily work,” said Brown.

SDN president Birgit Mager said, “Bringing the 10th global Service Design Network conference to Madrid is a great opportunity to share with the Spanish public and private service sector the impact Service Design has on innovation and quality of services. Having BBVA as our key sponsoring partner is very meaningful for us. Just now Forrester is celebrating BBVA for having as the best mobile banking service in the world . This and many other outstanding achievements are also rooted in the systematic application of  Design, so BBVA is a role-model for innovation in the (financial) service domain.”

For BBVA’s Brown, “The theme of this year’s conference, ‘Service design at scale,’ is one of the challenges that many companies like BBVA will soon have to face. We are already working to bring design to a global scale, in an organization with a very diverse culture that offers services to 70 million customers around the world.”

The meeting in Madrid, the tenth to date, will be held at La N@ve, a space dedicated to new technologies that recently hosted MoneyConf 2017. SDGC17 will position the Spanish capital as one of the design powers, alongside New York, Amsterdam and Stockholm.

During the two days of activities, the experts attending SDGC17 will attempt to answer questions such as the evolution of service design in an increasingly digital and technological world, the approximation of projects according to their scale and the importance of the design of the so-called touchpoints that go beyond a specific product or service.