Best student work in product and industrial design spotted in 2021

Considering the importance of time spent in the studio in person, students of product design and industrial design must have found locking in difficult. But you wouldn’t know by looking at some of the standout projects we’ve seen this year.

Out of the dozens of student projects we covered in 2021, these seven below really stood out. Students tackled real world problems and asked the right questions. They did not rely on hypothetical magical applications in their designs, but rather manipulated physical materials to enable their objects to achieve desired results. None of these projects are designed for Instagram.

Most of the projects considered the overall system in which they would operate, and most of the projects really showed their research and development work; click on the links below for more details.

Politecnico di Milan Design Laboratory, Italy

The students reflected on the physical UX of a pothole repair device, as well as the economic system that would allow municipalities to maintain it.

National College of Art and Design, Ireland

Morgan asked, “How many of our devices are really essential? And designed a toaster with “a distributed feature set: where design features are complemented by other objects the user owns.”

University of New South Wales, Australia

Kong’s stylish seats designed for orchestra members have improved adjustment mechanisms to accommodate a variety of instrument-based sitting postures. It also stacks to take up less space than the existing model.

San Francisco State University

The Kasirifar chair designed to seat, stimulate and engage children can be rocked in a variety of configurations, “merging the concept of toy and furniture”.

University of Canterbury, New Zealand

Williamson devised a cheaper, more durable way to protect vineyards from pests than the existing system.

Kaohsiung National University of Science and Technology, Taiwan

Wang and Wu’s cleaning cart makes it easier for the worker’s body with improved ergonomics and a transformable setup that provides better maneuverability in tight spaces.

Saint Martins Center, United Kingdom

By developing a practical method of turning food waste into something useful, Echard has developed a system that takes into account the environment, the supply chain and the economy.

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