Desk research


Suggested Time

Ideally, half a day, in a workshop setting 30-60 min.

Level of Difficulty



Each team member individually


Different information sources (literature, documents, statistical data), internet access


Classic desk research is a fundamental part of an analysis but can also be used in the Design phase. Available internal as well as external information  sources are analysed with respect to certain research purpose like a challenge. Internal source can, for example, be customer data, sales data or reports whereas external sources include third-party reports, product reviews or social media platforms. Obviously, desk research can also be used to gather information about new technologies or law regulations and is mandatory for cost-benefit analysis. One should also keep in mind that doing out-of-the-box research (e.g. trends in different industries) might also lead to interesting findings.


External sources:

1. Identify market competitors and check their websites;

2. Look for publications regarding the industry/market and existing innovations;

3. Do cross checks on similar or related industries;

4. Check the internet for new trends;


Internal sources:

Check internal data sources like CRM, ERP etc.