Creative Lives Podcast — Raj Panjwani, service designer for the Ministry of Justice, on taking ego out of design
This week we talk to Raj Panjwani, service designer for the Ministry of Justice. He shares what it’s like to work for government, taking ego out of your work and what emerging designers can do to prepare themselves for service design roles.
Service Designer at the Ministry of Justice (2016–present)
Design Director, Sense Worldwide (2002–2016)
Creative Director, Panjwani Swift (1997–2002)
Designer, Gyro (1997)
Senior Designer, Lyndsay & Associates (1995–1996)
Designer, The Quantok Group (1993–1995)
BA Communications Media, University for the Creative Arts (1989–1992)
After gaining years of experience in multiple areas of design, Raj admits that his working history has made him something of a generalist. But this has all become invaluable input for his current role as a service designer for the ministry of justice, where his work ranges from workshops and interviews to creating detailed system maps – all towards improving governmental services.
Graduating in 1992 with a degree in media communications, Raj started out on a traditional graphic design path, cutting his teeth at studios in the South West of England and Australia, before moving to London where his journey took him from creative agency Gyro, to freelancing, to running his own business as a creative director. Eventually Raj made a shift away from design that makes things look good, into design that is truly useful and accessible.
Joining innovation studio Sense Worldwide as a design director in 2002, he spent the next 15 years growing and evolving the company, collaborating with clients such as Nike, sonos, converse and Barclays. Here the focus was on helping brands create work that puts the user first, providing research-based guidance to be used internally.
Having left just last year, Raj came onto the digital team at Ministry of Justice soon after, and is now working on services that improve the justice and prison system.