Design for sustainable innovation


Ecodesign is the art of achieving more with less. The “Design for Sustainable Innovation” specialisation focuses on an innovative approach to holistic product development. The DESIGNPILOT, an integrative development process, bundles and deepens aspects such as form, emotion, function, production, sales, use and sustainability. This web-based method supports interdisciplinary teams, promotes systematic creativity and solves complex problems.  (LINK:

The study focus includes classic consumer goods, capital goods, service design and digital solutions as we explore the opportunities and risks of digital transformation in technology, business, culture and society.

The extended design philosophy aims to consider the entire life cycle of a product by using less materials and energy while generating greater benefits. We are committed to the fundamental transformation of the economic system towards sustainability and justice by promoting innovative, interdisciplinary development processes. Our goal is to create a habitable world despite climate change by designing not only products, but also system-orientated procedures and processes to shape individual and collective everyday culture.”



The focus emphasises sustainability and eco-design through the integration of research and practical experience in materials, construction and manufacturing processes as well as innovative technologies. We emphasise methodical approaches to systematic and creative design, in particular through the use of the web-based DESIGNPILOT.

Our course content emphasises the economic and ecological potential of eco-design and emphasises systemic, structural and creative thinking in addition to technical skills and aesthetic sensitivity. Environmental consideration in product development is seen as a key factor for innovation, cost savings and competitive advantages. We impart holistic competences by combining technical, aesthetic and ecological aspects in product development:

  • Recognising economic and ecological potential in product development
  • Integrating ecological considerations into the entire design process
  • Practice-orientated research into materials, construction and manufacturing processes
  • Innovative design methods: use of the web-based DESIGNPILOT for systematic design and construction
  • Development of interfaces to institutions for technology transfer and interdisciplinary exchange
  • Research focus in industrial design: design engineering, innovative material utilisation, manufacturing processes, recycling
  • Application of CAD/CAM, VR/AR and rapid prototyping

Methods and creativity techniques for ecological analyses


Study goals

In this specialisation, students acquire the ability to successfully master complex problems through a multi-stage design process. This includes the planning, organisation and implementation of development processes in interdisciplinary teams. The focus is on the integration of innovative materials, technologies, sustainable development processes, intercultural and global production aspects and marketing strategies. In addition, significant megatrends of the 21st century are creatively integrated into new product concepts.

The overarching goal of eco-design is to design products, services and systems in such a way that their overall environmental impact is reduced across all phases of their life cycle. This includes life cycle thinking, emphasising longevity, careful use of resources and avoiding pollutants and waste. Ecodesign not only aims to reduce the material and technical impact on the environment, but also seeks new answers to individual values, lifestyles and cultural practices. The design process takes into account a variety of aspects, including technical, aesthetic, economic, social and ecological ones. With its sustainable design approach, ecodesign thinks ahead about social, economic and ecological consequences, strives to minimise environmental impact and takes into account the social effects of designs.

  • Developing creative and strategic skills to tackle complex problems through a multi-stage design process
  • Planning, organisation and implementation of development processes in interdisciplinary teams
  • Integration of innovative materials, technologies and sustainable development processes with a focus on environmental aspects
  • Emphasising life cycle thinking, longevity, careful use of resources, avoidance of pollutants and waste
  • Consideration of individual values, lifestyles and cultural practices in the design process
  • Holistic consideration of technical, aesthetic, economic, social and ecological aspects in design
  • Sustainable design approach with foresighted thinking about social, economic and ecological consequences
  • Striving to minimise environmental impact and taking into account the social impact of material or immaterial designs