21-year-old Boyan Slat receives €100.000 for his endeavor to clean up the plastic soup

INDEX: Award for The Ocean Cleanup


28 Aug 2015 Published in Social by Bas van Lier

The Ocean Cleanup, brainchild of Dutch engineering student Boyan Slat, was awarded an INDEX: Award worth 100.000 euros yesterday in Helsingør, Denmark. The other four awards were for Tesla’s Powerwall, language website Duolingo, eye examination app Peek Retina and Sky Urban Vertical Farming system. (...)


25 Aug 2015 Published in Speakers by Bas van Lier

  “Innovation for society has design sensibility as part of a three-legged stool where the other two are scientific temper and art ability. Unfortunately this critical input – design sensibility – is under-supported in our society today.” Said Indian designer and educator, professor M P Ranjan, who sadly left this life on 9 August 2015. (...)


08 Jul 2015 Published in Main stories by editor

The blog is growing and growing. This year we’ve welcomed visitors from more than 100 countries worldwide and our reach is expanding every week.  Time now for a break, but we will return in September. (...)

Impressively designed message from UNOCHA calls for $15bn in funding

Humanitarian aid: 82M people in need


29 Jun 2015 Published in Aid by Bas van Lier

News on the delivery of 50 Better Shelters by IKEA Foundation to Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and donation pledges of $3bn to rebuild Nepal after the country was hit by the devastating earthquake two month ago – and a second one on May 12th – made me want to know more about the current situation in the country. As a result I came across the website of UNOCHA, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Here I was struck both by the figures of devastation and humanitarian need in Nepal and the clear, informative and impactful design […] (...)

Architect Jon Sojkowski opened a database to document African traditional architecture

To the rescue of African vernacular architecture


26 Jun 2015 Published in Culture by Bas van Lier

It all started when architect Jon (Twingi) Sojkowski from South Carolina (USA) travelled to Zambia as a Peace Corps volunteer in 1998. Sojkowski was intrigued by the vernacular architecture he came across and started to document it. Now there is African Vernacular Architecture, a website containing a database with pictures and information on African traditional architecture to which everyone is invited to submit images. (...)

Project Soli uses radar technology for interaction with devices

No more need for buttons and switches


24 Jun 2015 Published in Senses by Bas van Lier

Google again. And mainly a technical development, but with potentially huge impact for design. Project Soli is developing a new interaction sensor using radar technology. The sensor can track sub-millimeter motions at high speed and accuracy. It fits onto a chip, can be produced at scale and built into small devices and everyday objects. Just watch the video.   (...)

Collaborative design process leads to a health encouraging building

Healthy building syndrome for Medibank


22 Jun 2015 Published in Health by Bas van Lier

A new building for Australian health insurance company Medibank proves that design can help to improve people’s health. The building in Melbourne is designed to encourage movement and healthy behaviour along with flexibility, freedom of choice, creativity, interaction and engagement. (...)

Joris Laarman Lab announces in-stiu 3D printing of steel bridge in Amsterdam

Crossing water and printing boundaries


19 Jun 2015 Published in City by Bas van Lier

Drawing a real size bridge on location in steel. That is what MX3D intends to do within the near future in Amsterdam. MX3D is the brainchild of Dutch designer Joris Laarman, who received international acclaim for his bone furniture. 3D printing an entire steel bridge over water in the centre of Amsterdam is the ultimate poster project to demonstrate the new technique developed by Joris Laarman Lab in collaboration with several specialist companies and supported by software company AUTODESK and construction company Heijmans. The big innovation here is that the printing robots can work freely in space, without the constraints of the traditional 3D […] (...)

Dutch designers lead the way in modular revolution

The future of mobile is modular


17 Jun 2015 Published in Sustainability by Bas van Lier

Fairphone 2 is here. After having sold 60.000 Fairphones of the first edition, Fairphone, the company started by Dutch designer and WDCD speaker Bas van Abel, presented the second edition yesterday. The Fairphone 2 is designed to last even longer that the first one, thanks to a modular architecture for easy dis- and reassembly and an integrated protective case. With an estimated sales price of 525 euros the FP2 is also more expensive then the first edition. Apart from being produced as fairly and sustainable as possible, without for instance the use of conflict metals, the FP2 is designed for […] (...)

Nobel prize for design draws 1,123 nominations from 73 countries

More big companies among INDEX: Award finalists


15 Jun 2015 Published in Social by Bas van Lier

Tesla’s Powerwall, Google’s Cardboard, Smart Contact Lenses and Self Driving Car, IKEA’s Better Shelter and Flexible Space. There seem to be more large brands than ever among the 46 finalists of the INDEX: Awards, the Danish biennial equivalent for design of the Nobel prizes. It makes clear that established companies are taking their social responsibility more and more seriously. (...)