Leitung: Dr. Sharon Baurley | Assistenz: Annina Gähwiler

Das Programm wird von Sharon Baurley in englischer Sprache unterrichtet.


The MA Product programme is focused on exploring new concepts of product design in the current climate of significant global shifts and challenges – industrial, technological, ecological, social and political:

We are in the geological age of the Anthropocene, in which human activity has negatively influenced the whole planetary ecosystem. There is a need to balance the ecological, economic and social ecosystems, so that human beings co-exist with natural systems.

We are in a post-industrial era and an era of digital ubiquity, in which services, knowledge, information and creativity are increasingly the focus of the economy.

We are seeing a shift in values amongst post-industrial societies towards experiences, localism, sharing, and connectedness, and in some societies, a shift towards a social ecology characterised by self-determinism, as citizens and societies take it upon themselves to design their own lives and to solve their own problems.

The MA Product programme explores new product typologies and new cultures surrounding products

service ecologies – relationships between people, products, social activities, infrastructures

digital cultures – object-mediated interactions; UX; augmented products; blended digital-physical products; socio-material interactions and material-immaterial experiences; visceral Internet of Things; new experiences from big data

cultures of design and production – circular design and closed loop manufacturing; Fab City/locally productive-globally connected; bio-materials and growing products; customisation; AI and CAD; automated production; user design/innovation; distributed data & local manufacturing ecosystems; on-site/on-demand manufacture

social ecologies – community organizing; social innovation; co-operativism; collaborative economy; global connectivity & «cosmopolitan localism» (Manzini)

— to de-couple use of materials resources from human wellbeing and economic development, in order to help society transition to a sustainable existence.

The MA Product programme aims to educate designers to work at boundaries of the design discipline and to keep extending them, as increasingly designers now work in the fields and industries of the wider economy, as well as the creative economy: private sector (electronics, domestic, food, healthcare, leisure, travel); research & development (academic and commercial); public sector (local and national government, EU, education and training); third sector (cooperatives, non-profit organisations, social enterprises and charities).

The Product Design programme seeks to explore these new territories with a multi-cultural and international community of students in order to bring a diverse range of perspectives to bear on the challenges we face; we welcome applications from students from all over the world.

The programme is taught in English by Sharon Baurley – Head of the Industrial Design subject area, and visiting research professor at the Royal College of Art in London – and the MA team (Annina Gähwiler [product designer], Dr Francis Müller [social scientist]).