Self-driving taxi boats and tasting box with edible insects at UID21


This year's degree show at UID offers up a unique collection of innovations - ranging from autonomous taxi boats in the year 2086, to a crisis device for producing your own electricity, to a culinary tasting box with edible insects.


Text: Jens Persson

Get a glimpse of tomorrow as the next generation of designers showcase their visionary grad projects.  On June 1st, graduating students present their degree projects during Umeå Institute of Design's (UID) digital graduate exhibition, UID21 | A Design Talk Show. From May 31st, the grad projects can be explored in the virtual UID21 | Project Gallery. The gallery presents a 360-degree view of all projects, including; concept videos, images, interactive 3D-models and prototypes. This year's event will be presented in a talk show format, gathering special guests from across the globe.

During an unprecedented academic year at UID, students have been made to redefine the role of the designer, as the boundaries between the physical and the digital dissolved. More time and effort have gone into developing holistic experiences that include services and digital solutions. Many projects have also displayed a stronger engagement in regards to sustainability and environmental impact.

"Covid has largely forced students to stay away from our design studios and workshops, as many are now spread out across the world. However, they have demonstrated exceptional ingenuity in reinventing the design process in multiple digital ways", says Demian Horst, Associate Professor and incoming Head of Department at Umeå Institute of Design.

A hotbed of creative, life-centered design

Could an eco-centric tourist experience help people reconnect with our forests? Will accessible music-making become the next big thing in therapy? Can the introduction of digital tokens help make taxes visible in our immediate environment? Will the future barren landscapes created by climate change be reforested by expert teams in massive airships? These are some of the questions posed by grad students as they aim to shape our common future through powerful design ideas.

UID's standing on the global design stage continues to translate into a culturally diverse student body. This year alone, the graduating students represent 18 different nationalities. The educational programmes and student projects at UID are conducted in close collaboration with major multinational companies as well as research institutions, municipalities and health care units. Each year, representatives from companies, organizations and the design community join the event to follow up collaborations with students, to view demonstrations and portfolios, and to recruit the next generation of industrial designers.

UID21 | A Design Talk Show, June 1st, 15.00 (CEST)
UID21 Live Broadcast
UID21 Project Gallery

For more information, please contact:

Jens Persson, Communications Officer, Umeå Institute of Design
Phone: +46 73 626 35 51