Future design impact

24 Nov 2021
By Ineke Hans

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As designers we are part of the problems such as overproduction, over-consumption and climate change. How can we turn that around and create solutions in stead of more problems. Ineke Hans will talk about her work and about how designers can use their qualities and capacities for positive future impact.



Dutch Designer Ineke Hans is based in Arnhem and Berlin. She designs furniture, products, exhibitions and spaces with content and explores new design strategies. Ineke is professor Design & Social Context at Universität der Künste Berlin and in oktober 2021 she presented the first Dutch Deposit chair at the Dutch Design Week.


The Era of Design

10 Nov 2021
By Prof. Zhao Zhifeng

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Professor Zhao studies in the Art College of Suzhou University for his Bachelor degree, and Nantes Higher Design College in the Atlantic, France for his Master degree. Then he worked for RCP Design in France, and projects he participated include the visual system design for the public transportation in Angers City and Tours City, the exterior and interior design for French high-speed trains, Paris trolley cars, etc. He is currently the Head of the Department of Product Design (Innovative Living Products) of Suzhou University. He is also the founder of CHY DESIGN GROUP, which has served over 100 enterprises, and won more than 50 domestic and international awards.


25 Oct 2021
By Phil Balagdas

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As the craft of design continues to evolve and require more strategic thinking, we need new tools to address today’s greatest political, social, environmental, and cultural challenges. Speculative Designers and Strategic Foresight practitioners are banding together to bring these tools into the new landscape of design so that we can better assess the challenges of emerging technologies, climate change, and the implications we face with dynamically shifting political structures. Phil will walk through a number of these examples spanning the history of Critical Design, Design Fiction, and trend analysis tools providing a platform for us to begin shaping these conversations for the business and governments that are defining our future. He will also speak about the Design Futures Initiative, a not-for-profit organization he founded in 2015, the global community that has formed around these issues and the programs they are developing to address social challenges for youth. 


Phil Balagdas

Phil is a design leader based in San Francisco, CA and has been a practicing designer for over 20 years. He has experience designing across a variety of devices and platforms within non-profit, retail, advertising, and enterprise software organizations. He is the former Experience Design Director at McKinsey & Company working across industries to transform and enhance their digital businesses and strategies. He is also the president and founder of the Design Futures Initiative which organizes the international Speculative Futures meetups and the PRIMER conference in the US and Europe. An educator and futurist, his events and workshops bring together designers and futurists from all over the world to teach and share strategies for designing for the future and the ethical challenges around emerging technologies.

Martin Postler 

18 Oct 2021
By Martin Postler 

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As design evolution unfold multifaceted possibilities, strategic thinking can help to address emerging economical, social, environmental, and cultural challenges.
In his lecture Martin Postler bridges the work done at Postler & Ferguson with the research carried on at the Industrial Design Department of the Muthesius Kunsthochschule in Kiel, Germany.
His interest in design as a "life forming" agent creates a brand new relationship between professional practice and design education.

A New Space: Hybridization of the Reality

26 May 2021
By Vadim Smakhtin and Maria Kuptsova

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The significant boost of pandemic digitalization moved us to the mindset of the reduced physicality of space. Space became not only virtual, it was diminished to a dot, a white object in the emptiness of the informational vacuum. Being overloaded by the constant digital connections we started to discuss the processes of abolition - the abolition of physical or the abolition of the digital. These destructive views move us away from the process of reality hybridization where we build soft bridges between physical and virtual. Such bridges allow us to construct a new space, where the physical and digital dichotomy gravitates toward the visions of digitocenic environments, where physical and digital technologies are blended into one single space of Digitocene. The lecture by Vadim Smakhtin and Maria Kuptsova will open up the topic and will serve as an introduction for the workshop on virtual and hybrid design, which will take place in June 2021.

Meeting Points: Materials, Technologies, Communities

19 May 2021
By Abeer Seikaly 

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Abeer Seikaly is a Jordanian Palestinian interdisciplinary creative thinker and maker working across architecture, design, fine art, and cultural production. 

Her practice is deeply rooted in the processes of memory and cultural empowerment, expressing architecture as a social technology that has the power to redefine how we engage with- and within- space. Challenging traditional notions of belonging and identity, her work strives to be in constant dialogue with perceptions and contemporary understandings of time, materiality, and the role that women play in the shadow of a patriarchal structure. 

After receiving her BArch and BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2002, and pursuing her architecture career in luxury retail design and mixed-use developments, her work increasingly began to reflect a tactile sensitivity to the consciousness within the objects and spaces she crafts. In 2012, Abeer won The Rug Company’s Middle East Wallhanging Design Competition for exploring the duality between nostalgia and the labor of new craft- and in the following year was awarded the international Lexus Design Award, for a performative structural system which explored the social implications of creating homes for displaced communities. In 2015, she co-founded and co-directed Amman Design Week, a participatory learning initiative that seeks to promote and foster a culture of design and collaboration in Jordan, and in 2018 established ālmamar, a cultural experience and residency program based in Amman.

A lifelong diarist, Abeer continues to ‘read backwards while writing forwards’ in order to surface and interrogate themes and narratives that echo her work and life. 

In addition to numerous features including the MoMA in New York, the MAK in Vienna, and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, Abeer is also a frequent speaker, panelist, and visiting lecturer. 


5 May 2021
By Klemens Schillinger


Klemens Schillinger is a product and furniture designer based in Vienna, Since graduating from  the Royal College of Art he has been working as a freelance designer for various design studios as well as carrying on his own work. He has worked on projects for Hem, RIM-Blackberry, and Kvadrat among others.

His goal is to develop simple yet well thought-out products, design methods and ‘Do-It-Yourself’ recipes. This can result in almost self-evident product solutions with a spare amount of charm, minimal use of materials and poetic accents.


The Reagiro wheelchair

28 April 2021
By Reto Togni

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The Reagiro wheelchair introduces an all-new user experience to manual wheelchairs. Its first of a kind, fully mechanical, steering system and allows a user to control the movement of the chair either conventionally or through upper body movement rather than through breaking and pushing. A laterally tiltable backrest is linked to the front axle and turns a leaning movement into a steering action.

Reto Togni works though mundane everyday things which have the capacity to shape and change who people are, what they do, how they view the world and how they are viewed by others. As a developer of such everyday objects,  Togni disentangles these relationships, analyses their components, and prototypes interventions and designs new practices.



14 April 2021
By Pauline Esparon

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Pauline Esparon is a product,  textile and craft designer who graduated from the celebrated Eindhoven Design Academy. In 2020 she  was nominated for the Kazerne Design Award. He work is notably experimental and engages with the pre-processed state of materials and ideologically plays with the juxtaposition of craft and serial production in an environmentally sensitive world.

In her own words, “..she plays with the notion of «rawness», a form of archaism, a primary state of materials before their standardization by industry. Forms from the vegetal, the animal or the mineral worlds become playful and can be intertwined. Her works always start with the investigation of materials, and slide from an instinctive research to a definite shape. Her approach is both sensible and. contextual, by questionning both the qualities of materials and the culture of materials, their heritage, their survival, their systems. Each project envisions a proposition to tweak production for the better and consider humble materials, processes, purposes of production as well as possible perspectives for crafts.”


Scale Up Scale Down

24 March 2021
By Tomoko Azumi
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Tomoko Azumi, a furniture, product and interior designer leading TNA Design Studio based in East London. TNA is a multi cultural design team that since its establishment in 2005 has undertaken a wide range of design projects from jewellery ring to the UK Supreme Court furniture.
Alongside of her design practice, Tomoko is being involved in teaching at both BA and MA courses, giving workshops and being a member of design awards juries including D&AD Design Award, UK; imm Köln Design Award and iF Design Award, Germany; and Good Design Award, Japan.


03 March 2021
By Arthur Huang

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