The top spot claimed by UID is based on design projects created
by the school's students over the past five years. Among the
individual student winners from UID this year's Red Dot
competitions we find projects and products dealing with aircraft
assembly and serious knee injuries.
- The fact that we once again place ourselves atop the Red Dot
Ranking shows that we continue to position ourselves on the global
stage in a competitive and challenging climate, says Thomas
Olofsson, Head of Department at Umeå Institute of Design. The
unique environment that has been created over the years here at UID
is the result of some outstanding work by both students, employees
and alumni. The essence of the creative process that we aim to
convey is always based on participation, sustainability and
personal commitment. The fact that UID is continuously recognized
worldwide gives us a strong belief that we have the tools to
continue to develop both design education and design research in
the coming years.
Smart rehabilitation bracelet for knee injuries gives real-time
Rik Oudenhoven from the Netherlands, who won an individual award
for his UID degree project at this year's Red Dot gala, graduated
from the Master's Programme in Advanced Product Design last year.
He believes that UID's success can explained by the passionate
atmosphere surrounding the school, where the love of design
permeates almost everything.
- UID has had a huge impact on my design career. The school
pushed me to become the best designer I can be. Upon arrival, you
are placed in a group of talented people, with many different
backgrounds, who keep motivating and inspiring each other to push
the limits of what is currently possible. The sheer passion of both
students and staff for design and improving life in general is what
makes this school such a unique place in the world. Without a
doubt, this plays a huge part in why it is once again ranked among
the top design educations in the world, says Rik Oudenhoven.
The project that landed Rik Oudenhoven a Red Dot award is aimed
at helping people who have suffered severe cruciate ligament
injury. The product, developed in collaboration with Nokia, is
called Ara. It is a smart rehabilitation bracelet that is attached
under and over the knee. Ara continuously monitors the injured knee
and collects data that is translated into daily updated measures
allowing users to optimize an individually designed rehabilitation.
The daily feedback from Ara gives patients the opportunity to take
an active part in their own rehabilitation.
- What was especially rewarding with this project was the
human-centered and holistic approach I was able to take, which
means that I was finding real problems people were facing in order
to improve their daily live. It also allowed me to challenge
current production methods and see if we could produce products and
services in a more sustainable way. The process of putting the
human first but also having the holistic approach is in my opinion
key to finding purpose-driven innovation and developing solutions
that can truly make a difference, explains Rik Oudenhoven.