Critical friend


Critical friend is a method of review for plans created, actions taken, and prototypes produced during the design process.

Also known as

The tool

You critical friend is someone who is on your side and who will provide encouragement. However, conversations should be truthful and constructive.

The role of the critical friend is to ask questions rather than provide solutions and answers. They should be able to:

  • Cast fresh eyes over what you have done.
  • Where necessary, be able to challenge you in a non-threatening, non-judgemental way.


The critical friend should give you a forum where you can present your ideas safely.

Use the new insights offered by your critical friend to enable you to develop the next steps for your concept.

Why use it

When to use it

How to use it



Similar to

Use in conjunction with

Complemented by


Additional information