A charrette is an intense generative exercise that takes place over multiple days, and involves a multi-disciplinary group of participants. The purpose of a charrette is to efficiently generate design solutions for a project while considering diverse viewpoints of the stakeholders involved.
Stakeholders from every facet of the project, including designers, developers, user experience engineers, marketing professionals, Subject Matter Experts, and intended primary users collaborate and attend a charrette; there may be 20 or more people at the meeting. Throughout the course of a meeting day, the main group breaks into sub-groups to work on solving a smaller chunk of the design problem. The sub-groups spend about 30 minutes brainstorming and diagramming potential solutions, then all the sub-groups merge and share their findings. This main group votes on the most feasible and desired solutions and then divides into new sub-groups to work on another design issue. Each sub-group is a fresh, multi-disciplinary collaboration. On the last day of the charrette, the entire group determines priorities and general timelines for the most popular design solutions that were suggested.