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Product Design delegation set for India

Product Design staff and students from the University of Dundee will next week jet off to India to conduct a prestigious learning and knowledge workshop at India’s leading design school.

They have been invited to join the Open Electives initiative at the National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmadabad. The intensive programme will see them explore how digital electronics can be embedded into design culture of India with students, designers and academic from across that country.

The 13-strong Dundee delegation, featuring research staff and students from the MSc Product Design programme, will participate in the ‘Make the Web Physical for India’ workshop at NID from January 16th-27th.

Dr Jon Rogers, MSc Product Design course director, said the Open Electives programme was a ‘melting pot of design thinking’.

‘This is the most exciting research and teaching trip that I have undertaken in 15 years as an academic,’ he continued.

‘The amount of knowledge that we will gain through working with our Indian colleagues is vast. NID has some of the world leaders in socially led products and services. I for one feel privileged to be asked to share our best practices about the digital economy at a time when the mobile technology is changing the world. ‘

The trip is sponsored by NCR, Mozilla, and Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, part of the University. In addition to financial support, NCR are helping the students to derive the maximum benefit from the experience by providing a brief to explore how mobile internet technology is being used.

According to Dr Rogers, the students are being tasked with delivering a substantial design report that he hopes will influence NCR’s thinking on a strategy for India and the mobile markets. The trip will see the Dundee staff and students use their research expertise to gather insights into key aspects of Indian life – from mobile and web technology use, to healthcare to rural living.

Using these results, they will then use technology to prototype new ways of using the web for the Indian market.

Steven Birnie, Senior Industrial Designer, at NCR, said, ‘While, in many Western countries, the advent of mobile technologies was seen as an evolutionary step forward, in developing nations it could be seen as a mobile revolution. NCR are looking to countries such as India to understand how businesses and consumers are adopting mobile technologies and the opportunities this may create.

‘We are keen to continue to support and build on our already strong cross industry-academic relationships. Collaborating with Dundee University will enable us to engage with consumers on the ground, gather genuine insights into mobile technologies and foster new relationships in India.’

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