A Hub for All Things Design

The Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation

Get oriented

with an introduction to our offerings and approach.


Jacobs Hall, our space for hands-on prototyping and fabrication.


design resources like advising, student organizations, and more.

Project Spotlight

Maker Labs

48 Hours, 11 Innovations at TOM:Berkeley

In a 48-hour makeathon focused on developing custom solutions for everyday challenges encountered by people with disabilities, 11 teams worked with need-knowers to create prototypes.

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Student projects honored in World Changing Ideas Awards

Two projects developed with resources at the Jacobs Institute, CITRIS Invention Lab, and Berkeley’s design ecosystem have been recognized in Fast Company’s first-ever World Changing Ideas Awards, which honor businesses, policies, projects, and concepts that offer innovative solutions to the issues facing humanity.

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Jacobs Design Conversations: Elisa Giaccardi

Elisa Giaccardi, professor at TU Delft and director of the Connected Everyday Lab, will give a talk at Jacobs Hall.

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Design Field Notes: Jorge Fino and Bryson Gardner

As part of the Design Field Notes pop-up series, Pearl Automation’s Bryson Gardner (CEO) and Jorge Fino (Director of Design) will share insights at Jacobs Hall.

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Courses: Fall 2017

ARCH 259: Flexible Hybrid Structures

This interdisciplinary class aims to attract students from across campus. In the class, students will explore the design possibilities emerging from combining soft, flexible, and elastic materials with bespoke 3D-printed joinery. Topics will include a general introduction to bending principles in hybrid systems as they can be found in nature and technology. Students will investigate inspirational case studies of bent and folded structures from various fields of application. Together, we will conduct hands-on physical experiments and learn how to use digital simulations for the design and form-finding of flexible structures and mechanisms. In groups, students will design and build their own flexible hybrid structure and envision a practical implementation for it.

Simon Schleicher | 3 units | Class number: 11861

ME C178: Designing for the Human Body

The course provides project-based learning experience in understanding product design, with a focus on the human body as a mechanical machine. Students will learn the design of external devices used to aid or protect the body.

Grace O’Connell | 3 units | Class number: 46374

NWMEDIA 190-3 / 290-3: Critical Practices

Critical Practices is a hands-on studio design course where students work at the intersection of technological innovation and socially engaged art. Students will integrate a suite of digital fabrication tools with social design methods to create work that engages in cultural critique. Working with innovative technologies and radical, new art practices, this course will explore: hybrid art forms, critical design for community engagement, interventions in public spaces, tactical media and disobedient objects. These new making strategies will reframe our notions of people, places and participation.

Jill Miller | 4 units | Class number: 42248 (190) / 42247 (290)

BioE 190 / 290: Hacking for Impact: Tackling Societal Challenges with the Lean Launchpad Method

Students will learn lean startup methodologies and apply those learnings to tackle some of the biggest societal challenges of our time. At course completion, students will profoundly understand the problems/needs of external beneficiaries; know how to rapidly iterate technology solutions while searching for product-market fit; understand all the stakeholders, deployment issues, costs, resources, and ultimate mission value; deliver minimum viable products that match beneficiary needs in an extremely short time; and produce a repeatable model that can be used to launch other potential solutions.

Amy Herr, Steve Blank, & Steve Weinstein | 4 units