We propose a research approach that extends phenomenon-driven research – which is primarily aimed at producing descriptive and explanatory knowledge about novel phenomena – with a design-oriented focus. The resulting approach aims to develop not only explanatory knowledge about novel phenomena but also prescriptive knowledge about how to face corresponding novel challenges and does so in conjunction and in a mutually reinforcing way. We illustrate our approach with two examples to understand and produce design principles for the novel phenomena of organising the IT setups in Scaled Agile organisations and Digital Innovation Units, respectively. Researchers can draw on our approach to understand novel phenomena and simultaneously produce knowledge that is also relevant to practitioners facing novel practical challenges resulting from these novel phenomena.