Prof. Jenz Großhans, Prof. Paolo Tumminelli

The area of «Design concepts» investigates in the design process itself, its structure and procedure, the question of »how« to design.

It is about:

the structure of the design process goal-oriented strategies process supervision and monitoring overcoming mental blocks interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches

There are various approaches to every design problem. For the students it makes sense to learn and test at least one of the traditional approaches before developing and arriving at an individual methodology. At the beginning of the course most students design from a good level. Soon the question arises whether other methods, more structured conceptual approaches, would be more sensible to avoid errors and, at the same time, to open up new perspectives. A concept is necessary to determine what and how an object should be and how it is supposed to perform, in addition to the expertise of how it is going to be realised.

The designer’s work

A designer’s key responsibility is to raise the right questions in order to offer specific solution strategies. It is therefore necessary that designers are already involved in the formulation of the task (the «brief»), which requires a comprehensive and transdisciplinary competence on the designer’s part. Consequently, conceptual and planning competency are fostered in addition to a formal design competence, hopefully leading to a convergence of social and structural problem areas.
This may lead to a situation in which the designer develops a focus in consulting. Designers eventually move into positions where design sense is applied in numerous areas – and that’s good.