Is Design Investigations right for you?

Twentieth century models of design education that fed an industrial, consumer-led society are no longer sustainable – but you know that. That’s why you’re here. You want to do something about it. You want to think imaginatively about the power and possibilities of design. You want to explore design’s role within society, culture, politics and the environment. You want to develop new ways of understanding and engaging with today’s complex reality. More than anything, you want to create change.

  • Design Investigations builds on our rich history of industrial and product design teaching, expanding to include speculative design, experience design, material investigation and much more.
  • You’ll learn from leading experts and award-winning designers. Every semester we’re joined by specialist tutors. This year we’re finding new ways to grow food and will be joined by a biologist and food expert for the semester.
  • It’s a five-year course. We welcome 6-10 students a year which gives us a student-teacher ratio of 1:3.
  • Our fees are some of the most competitive in the world. A maximum of EUR 750 per semester for international students.
  • We’re flexible and happy to take students who may already have a degree and want join us later on in the course.
  • You’ll have access to incredible facilities including studio space and workshops with the latest machines and tools.
  • You’ll have numerous opportunities to learn – diverse lectures and workshops, access to funding schemes, as well as internships and placements.
  • Many of our graduates have gone on to set up their own businesses as well as curating, researching and teaching. Others work for design consultancies such as IDEO and brands including BMW.

The Course

The course provides a rigorous education that uses critical thinking, investigative research, material prototyping and conceptual speculation to design objects, experiences, stories and systems. You’ll explore the designer’s role in dealing with real-world challenges, probing the limits of our current reality while addressing the future of design and its role within society, culture, politics and the environment.

Experiment and Play

We encourage experimental, innovative work that challenges that status quo to discover new ways of thinking and making. Alongside tactile everyday materials like paper, wood and bamboo, you’ll play with emerging technologies – artificial intelligence, synthetic biology, data, robotics – and investigate their potential.


Our vertical studios encourage a wider range of solutions from a more diverse group of students when dealing with briefs. Your teachers will include practitioners, mentors and specialists known for their expertise and experimental methods. Studio briefs include: Artificial Intelligence and Agency, Renewable Energy and Windmill Building, The Future of Democracy, and Food and Climate change.

Your Skills

You’ll gain conceptual and practical skills from deep research, ethnography and creative writing to sketching, 3D printing, laser cutting and modelmaking.

Guest Lectures and Workshops

Experts from across the world come to present lectures and lead workshops. Recently we welcomed theatre visionaries Rimini Protokoll and past guests include Bruce Sterling, Sara Hendren, Lucy McRae and Amelie Klein. Workshops have included augmented reality, creative writing, and sound and set design.

Recognition, Awards and Honours

Students have been recognised by Antenna as some of the world’s best design graduates. Their projects have been featured in various publications including The New York Times, Dezeen, Abitare, Metropolis and Der Standard. Projects include the Vienna Design Biennale, Triennale Milano, Vitra Design Museum, MAK Vienna as well as representing Austria at the London Design Biennale.

Jobs and Opportunities

Graduates have gone on to work for design consultancies such as IDEO and brands including BMW while others have set up their own businesses. Many are involved in curation, teaching and research. Past internships include L’Oréal, Atelier Iris van Herpen, Superflux, Biofaction and Studio PSK.


Have a question about the Course or the Studio Program? Please don’t hesitate to contact us.


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