Announcing the Jacobs x BMW Design Research Program on Digital Sustainability

March 17, 2023 | 10:44 am

Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation is pleased to announce a new Design Research Program and collaboration with BMW.  Launching this summer, this two-part engagement invites undergraduate and graduate students at UC Berkeley to conduct research and explore design opportunities related to Digital Sustainability. Participating students will be investigating the ways digital products may influence social change and increase responsibility toward sustainable practices.  

Join us and designers from BMW on March 22nd, 12:30-1:30 pm at Jacobs Hall for a lunchtime panel + pizza + networking to learn more about the Jacobs Design Research Program and ways to engage! (Please RSVP to attend.)

Part 1: The Summer Design Research Fellowship is a funded opportunity that invites four upper-level undergraduate or graduate students to take a deep dive into research that explores the question: “What techniques does the consumer electronics industry use to influence sustainable behavior through digital products, services and experiences?”

This 10-week engagement (June 5–August 11) is supported by a member of the Jacobs Institute’s design faculty and guided by a PhD student with expertise with this topic. Mentors from BMW also provide an industry perspective on research briefs and to offer feedback and design research advice during key points in the summer.  The program begins with a research orientation and then moves into literature review and prior work search on the topic. Outcomes from this work will result in a white paper which will be prepared for conference presentation and publication. It also serves as a basis for studio engagement in the fall. 

Each fellow will be paid a $5000 stipend.  Applications for this fellowship open now and close at 11:59 PM on April 10, 2023.

Part 2: The Fall 2023 DES INV 190 course will build on and leverage this Summer Research Design Fellow research and papers to investigate how consumers can be positively influenced through digital products (services/experiences/etc.), to achieve a change within the society, enhancing everybody’s life and wellbeing. The course will take students through a rapid design process, progressing from early concepts through design development and prototyping over the course of the semester. Students will work in teams to produce a prototype of their project idea by the end of the semester.  JIDI will provide the process for course participants to upload their work to an open-source platform and publish using open source licenses.

Jacobs is appreciative of BMW’s support and collaboration in offering these opportunities to explore the ways digital products may influence social change and increase responsibility toward sustainable practices.  

RSVP to attend the panel discussion and pizza lunch on March 22nd.