This studio focusses on the creation, design and development of radical or disruptive products. We focus on current societal problems, or future opportunities and issues. Within the studio, projects have focussed on topics such as air pollution, food waste, mental health, single use plastic, farming with a lack of land or fresh water, safer car travel, active travel, reduced social skills, reduced imagination and enhanced brain power.
Within the studio we adopt a humancentred approach to design. This is an empathic creative problem-solving process, which places the intended users at the centre of all design activities.
The students play an active part in all of our taught sessions, from designing and testing research methods, such as Cultural Probes and Diary Studies, through to running creative workshops, and building and testing prototypes.
As a studio, we are also focussed on enhancing our students’ communication skills. We run a series of professional hands-on communication workshops, led by industry, which are focussed on product sketching and rendering, graphic design and CAD rendering.
Students that have selected this studio as their programme of study have left to work at companies such as LEGO, Under Armour, Adidas, taken up roles as UX consultants at digital agencies, and some have even started their own business with their studio project.
The following work was produced by the studio in 2018/19.
Totem Warriors is a new buildable figure and trading card game that sees players construct and battle gods from different ancient worlds.
The simple wooden pieces feature no printed or moulded details, instead causing children to imagine the appearance of their creations themselves. Whilst interacting competitively with their friends, players will simultaneously develop their imaginative capabilities through exploration of the warriors’ personalities and actions.
This universal ball joint connection system means that players can swap and steal pieces with their opponent during gameplay, resulting in truly imaginative play.
Totem Warriors is a multimedia franchise with an accompanying anime-style television series which would tell the story of unlikely teens finding the ancient Totem pieces, summoning the gods within!
Jake’s generated over 500 iterations of the design to ensure the one taken forward was the most efficient in terms of ergonomics. The cup’s form, a cylindrically biconcave shape, was developed against 11 different generative design methods and assessor software. This further refined the chosen shape to create efficiencies in: convection flow rates; ergonomic responses; injection moulding efficiencies; mould efficiencies; and 360˚ drinking angles to reduce part wear and increase fluid flow rates. In addition, more privately known developments will make it unique when launching later in 2020.
The cup holds coffee and is beautifully simple to carry as well as drink from. This is achieved by the VSL lid that allows a 360˚ drinking angle with the turbine-like support structure that funnels and controls flow rates. The red silicone band creates an affordance of open and closed, getting rid of any risk of an open cup in an expensive laptop bag.
This cup as 55% material usage reduction, 75% material weight reduction and 130% more thermal efficiency, staying hot for 2x longer than competitors’ products.
People rely on fast consumable foods to accomodate their busy working lives. These short engagements consumers have with these foods means packaging is disposed of almost instantaneously with 10.7 billion tonnes being generated every year, the majority being single-use plastic.
Prep Pod tackles this by making people stop and think about their purchasing decisions. Users make their lunch order via an app, giving them the chance to make their ideal meal whilst not generating any waste. They then collect their lunch in the beautiful modular containers which fit into a stylish, wipe-clean carry case which securely fastens them together and ensures they can easily transport them.
PrepPod is customisable through users being able to choose one of six colours for their bottle, and the natural bamboo used for the lids achieves a simple aesthetic which reflects the sustainable ethos of the product and sets out a sustainable and trendy way to live by.
The Pavement Project is a community-driven scheme that focusses on creating a humanising and empowering experience for homeless individuals by providing a range of services in a safe and non-judgemental environment. Skilled volunteers are able to donate their time and services inside the pod to help improve lives. Each pod travels around urban areas where homeless populations are largest, stimulating a conversation handset up bringing the social issue to the forefront of local communities.
A touchscreen on the pod allows the public to donate in a simple process, giving them control to make a transparent and meaningful donation to support the homeless in their community. The pod is collapsible to 2.55 m and the dual bearing system allows the space to increase by 77%, with integrated furnishings, reducing the amount of set-up time.
A key focus of the design was to re-imagine traditional charity services, providing a more personal and less intimidating experience. The calming, natural visual elements of the pods distance themselves from the predictable clinical appearance of charities.
The Pavement Project will help to empower those in need, change attitudes and improve lives.
The aim of Summit was to bring young adults closer to their finances and help them form new financial habits, reduce impulsion and build self-discipline that brings them closer to their own financial goals. It was also developed to help foster self-realisation in users’ own abilities to reach their financial targets.
Summit is an aluminium smart-wallet with an embedded touch screen display that gamifies budgeting. Summit securely merges users’ bank accounts into one platform using Open Banking, providing real time updates on daily spending, account balances and goals. The wallet is fingerprint protected, wirelessly charged and can contain up to eight bank cards and £100 of notes. It seeks to give users greater awareness and control of their money and rewards them for positive financial behaviour, nurturing new long-term habits.
See all Radical & Disruptive Innovation students in: 2019-20