Visual mindmap

Creating a visual overview of all the topics related to your solution idea

Practical Information

What is this tool?

A visual overview of all information that relates to your problem or solution and the context in which you are working. It includes all the topics and subtopics that are linked to the problem you are trying to solve.

Why do we use it?

This tool helps you to capture and structure ideas and knowledge, and to find links between ideas, opportunities and potential obstacles in your context. This visualisation helps you to make ideas more concrete and it helps to avoid terminology and have an inclusive brainstorm.

Design phase:

Setting the scene, Research, Ideation


Pen and paper, Post its, Print, Online tool


30 minutes - 1 hour

Worksheet Print
Worksheet Digital
Worksheet French
Worksheet Arabic
Worksheet without Text
Worksheet URL

A step-by-step guide

1. Decide if you prefer to work online by creating a digital Mindmap (using a tool such as Miro, Mural, Google Slides or Canva) or if you prefer a paper version. We have created a template on Miro that you can copy and fill in with your information.

2. Collect photos, text, quotes or news articles related to the problem you are trying to solve, the context around it, and other topics or themes connected to it. This information can be pictures, quotes or insights you collected yourself during the research phase or ones you found online.

3. Group the information and elements that are similar or connected to each other. Draw connections between things and use keywords. Try to express more abstract concepts (such as feelings and emotions) through images and key words.

4. Take a moment to observe your visual mind map and add more images or visuals if come up with new topics or ideas. 

5. Add post-its or text with titles and initial thoughts you have on the information you have organised. Create a list of the most relevant words that come to mind after you finish. 

It is ideal to use information you gathered first hand, but in case you did not manage to cover all the topics you can also find images (or text) online.

How other organisations used this tool

How to use the outcomes of the tool?

This tool allows you to generate and visualise a lot of associations and select the ones you find most relevant to be used as building blocks for your solution. It makes your ideas more concrete by using symbols, images and other visuals.

Related tools

Photo collection
Creating a visual story from the perspective of your users to empathise with them.
Use images from the Photo collection to create your Visual mindmap
Lottery game
Generating many creative and fresh ideas
Combine ideas and insights from this tool in unexpected ways during the Lottery game to come up with new ideas
User journey
Making your idea come to live by describing it from a users perspective
If this exercise has generated enough concrete ideas, use the user journey to describe how our user is going to interact with these ideas

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