Product Design and Silver Economy

Summer and Winter Courses - Bilbao

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This course examines the ways in which a particular environment can be explored and evaluated to develop critical and innovative design initiatives. In particular, the course focuses on how the concerns and actions of older citizens can create meaningful design proposals and, in turn, be supported and empowered by a variety of design methods. We will be particularly concerned with how everyday activities can be improved, reconsidered, and enriched in a variety of contexts.

The similarities and differences between the elderly and the young will also be key to this approach, which enables participants to generate and conceive appropriately and meaningfully designed artefacts and structures. Academics from Chelsea College of Art, UAL and IED Kunsthal Bilbao will take part in the workshop, as well as professionals focused on the subject matter.


  • Start date
    July 2021
  • Duration
    1 week
  • Attendance
  • Language
Taking Bilbao as an enclave point, creative design proposals will be developed in response to the living environment of the city, using active design research methods, to collect and evaluate results, and to be able to build concepts with them.
The course will begin with a series of key presentations, exploring case studies, design concepts, and narratives, carefully composed to inform, support, and address approaches to design problems arising from the research focus.
By conducting field studies led by specialized tutors and working with small groups within the ecology of action, you will learn and develop data capture methods.
Research data review and analysis sessions will form the basis for generating ideas.
Design development workshops will support an interactive thought process that enables you to better understand your end user to create innovative products and services. You will learn how this approach can help you solve problems creatively, before formulating your own original ideas clearly.
This course provides a variety of tools, activities, and real life examples with the goal of enhancing your design thinking. The emphasis on the user's perspective is a central consideration.
 At the end of the course you will have acquired new skills, knowledge and experiences, such as:
  • Observational and investigative gathering and analysis techniques to gain a broader understanding of user requirements.
  • Develop a sensitivity to user needs through active design research methods.
  • Explore and generate an individual research methodology by adopting iterative, creative and distinctive ways of approaching design problems.
  • Creation of a portfolio of concepts and design iterations.
  • New Column

    • 1 Citizenship: Age-friendly cities.

      You will consider work in common spaces within the city and how to improve their performance in terms of accessibility, rest spaces, waiting areas, way of enjoying and getting to know the city.
      Design of furniture, neighbourhood communities, recreational spaces taking into account elements such as zebra crossings, bus stops, parks, seating benches, etc. Integrating concepts such as accessibility, security, integration, ecosystem and priorities.
      "Design a new functionality in spaces and work with solid and tangible elements that help create it."

    • 2 Home: Feel at home anywhere.

      You will consider work within common spaces and other areas to recreate an approach that makes the user feel comfortable, conceived as a familiar place to be enjoyed.
      Design around concepts such as quality of life, integration, comfort, sharing and open spaces, common areas, places that recreate the fundamental aspects that build a home.

    • 3 Social: Connect people.

      You will consider the connections between people, through leisure, communication networks between people and a common understanding.
      Routes, gastronomy, museums, travel, love and culture, are some of the elements to take into account in this section.

Remarkable is that teacher who accomplishes himself what he teaches to others.
(Italian proverb)

IED faculty are professionals that daily face the market. Here you can read their bios.

Jose Hurtado

Jose Hurtado
Product Designer. Ephemeral architecture and Illustration. He is the design manager of watchmaking for two large Spanish luxury brands, SUAREZ and Aristocrazy. He combines this with his personal studio, The Serious Gentleman, where he works with different clients launching new products for brands such as Bullpadel or Rolex.

Jason Cleverly

Jason Cleverly
BA Product and Furniture Design Course Leader. Jason Cleverly develops and designs situational, interpretive craftworks for museums and art galleries. His PhD thesis is a critical evaluation of this design practice: The Artist-designer: Situating Creative Interaction and Interpretation in the Museum, 2018.

Fabiane Lee-Perrella

Fabiane Lee-Perrella
Fabiane Lee-Perrella is a designer, artist and lecturer. She is the founder of Flour Studio. Flour is a London based studio working across the fields of public art, design and social inclusion. Flour is committed to creating work in which the audience is engaged directly in the creative process and participants are encouraged to become co-authors and editors, as well as the spectators of the work.

Idoia García de Cortázar

Idoia García de Cortázar
A graduate in Fine Arts from the Faculty of Fine Arts of the UPV EHU, Master in "Social Function of Design" and Master in Innovation Strategies and Business Design Management for the Silver Economy. She is an expert in new models of care for the elderly and as such she directs the Humanizza company specialized in consulting aimed at measuring the quality of services and products of the Silver Economy.

Adrian Friend

Adrian Friend
Programme Director 3D Design & Craft Interior Design Product & Furniture Design. University of the Arts London.  Adrian Friend is an award winning architect, researcher and educator. His research on collaborative inter-disciplinary practices helped define Maker Architects' exploring the art of assembly and tactics that extend authorship through the workshop as a site of production in 'hot-rodding' by component designed, citizen build kits. Awarded an Innovate UK grant, for feasibility into multi-author prototypical systemised construction.

Adele Orcajada

Adele Orcajada
Adele has been a researcher, librarian and curator of materials since 2014, working as a freelance consultant before becoming a partner of MaterialDriven, where she continues to explore material innovation with brands and institutions. Adele has experience as a fashion accessories designer and product developer.