Accessibility links

Today we announce the Winners in the 2015 RSA Student Design Awards. This impressive list of emerging designers and innovators – some working in collaborative teams and some working individually – represent how design thinking can be applied in a range of contexts for positive social change and just how impactful good design can be.

Microbial swaddling blankets for babies, digital heritage mapping toys, water filtration service design schemes, and workshops for primary school pupils to develop their creative thinking skills are among the 20 winning projects in the 2015 RSA Student Design Awards, announced today. This impressive list of emerging designers and innovators – some working in collaborative teams and some working individually – represent how design thinking can be applied in a range of contexts for positive social change and just how impactful good design can be.

The winning projects were developed by students in response to the 2014/15 RSA Student Design Awards briefs. Arguably these briefs were the most diverse and challenging we’ve ever issued on topics such as how can design help us to understand and take care of our human microbiome, what kinds of situations and environments foster creative thinking, how can we use design to help us better connect to and celebrate our heritage, and, how we can lessen the burden of water collection for women in the developing world

Despite the challenge – or perhaps because of it – students around the world took to the task of applying design thinking in new and different ways, demonstrating passion and thorough research leading to insightful solutions.

In addition, for the first time this year, the RSA Student Design Awards featured a moving image brief in which students created an animation using content from the RSA esteemed Public Events programme. You can view all eight short-listed animations here.

Nearly 800 students and new graduates sent their work into the RSA in March and then our judges began the arduous task of reviewing and scrutinising the work, looking for key insights and clever design thinking. Those hundreds of entries became a short-list of nearly 70 and today, after interviews with all short-listed entrants, we are pleased to present the 20 winning projects and the designers behind them.

We are very proud of the impact that the RSA Student Design Awards scheme has on all participants – demonstrating the value of social design to the next generation is of paramount importance to the scheme. Kazz Morohasi, winner in the ‘Heritage by Design’ brief for her project ‘Walkies!’, an innovative digital heritage mapping and storytelling project for children by children, said this about her experience:

‘The RSA Students Design Awards scheme has played a life-changing role. I really didn’t expect this – I pursued the brief because heritage is an important theme for me. However, the more I became involved, the more I came to realise my values, interests, and motivations. I think that participating in the Award was the beginning of a meaningful design future ahead.’

walkies

Kazz Morohasi’s winning project ‘Walkies!’ in response to the Heritage by Design brief.

The RSA Student Design Awards have the most rigorous judging process of any design awards, rewarding not just execution, but crucially research, insights, innovation and social benefit. Shortlisted entrants are invited to an interview at the second stage of judging to discuss their work with a panel of experts in order to demonstrate the insights and processes they have developed in response to the brief. The winners are therefore selected on strategic ability as well as craft, ensuring that the shortlisted entrants offer employers a rich set of skills when they move into their placements following the Awards.

hero image

Lisa Hornsey’s winning project ‘Squiggle’ in response to the Fair Play brief. 

In addition to the rigourous judging process, the RSA Student Design Awards have further expanded their reach and impact through its independent programme of workshops for students working on the briefs. The workshops aim to equip students with skills that are not typically developed through formal education – the 2014/15 programme included interactive master-classes on ‘Commercial Awareness + Business Planning’, ‘How to Design for Behaviour Change’ and ‘Design for a Circular Economy’. Workshop materials were also published on the RSA Student Design Awards website as part of the online toolkit of resources for each brief for students to access in their own time.

Sponsors and partners of this year’s RSA Student Design Awards include RBS, PriestmanGoode, Waitrose, Springetts, Shift, Unilever, Natracare, the Eden Project and the Wellcome Trust, among many more. Sponsors and partners provide the RSA with financial support and work with the RSA to develop the briefs on topics that will excite and engage students around design for social change.   

We are holding a reception to celebrate the 2014/15 Award winners and participants on 11th June at the RSA. The event is a chance for past winners, sponsors and jury members to celebrate the next generation of socially conscious and responsible designers and will features a keynote presentation by Paul Priestman, a past RSA Student Design Award winner and Co-founding Director of PriestmanGoode, a leading multidisciplinary design consultancy specialising in transport, aviation, environment and product design for a roster of significant brands across the globe.

You’ll find the full list of winners below. In addition to the winners, the judges on each brief offered many short-listed students commendations to reward their hard work and enthusiasm in response to the briefs. You can read descriptions and see images of all the winning and commended work on our Showcase.

Congratulations to the thousands of students around the world who participated in this year’s RSA Student Design Awards and to those short-listed, commended and winning students who are driving the evolution of design as an invaluable tool for positive social impact.

2015 RSA Student Design Awards in brief:

  • 777 entries received
  • 69 projects short-listed
  • 30 countries represented in the entries
  • 28 winning students
  • 23 commendations
  • 20 winning projects
  • 8 briefs
  • £12,000 in cash prizes and paid placements

-----------------------------------------

2015 RSA Student Design Award Winners full list:

Creative Conditions, sponsored by RBS

  • Joint winners of the Royal Bank of Scotland Award for Best Design Project:
    Riikka Suominen, Thea Engerdahl, Vilde Bjørgen BA Graphic Design at Kingston University for
    Connect. Create. Collaborate: a mobile creativity network on the London Underground.
  • Joint winners of the Royal Bank of Scotland Award for Best Design Project:
    Ellie Lanham and Trystan Thompson BA Graphic Design at University of the West of England for
    SPART: a workshop for primary school students to invent a new sport using innovative thinking
  • Joint winner of the Royal Bank of Scotland Award for the Best Business Case:
    Magdalena Borzecka, BA Interior Environmental Design at Duncan of Jordanstone College at the University of Dundee, for
    PLUG in: a mobile 3D printer lab to support people and communities who lack access to adequate equipment to help them develop their creative capacities
  • Joint winner of the Royal Bank of Scotland Award for the Best Business Case:
    Helen Karwot, BA Interior Environmental Design at Duncan of Jordanstone College at the University of Dundee, for
    Pulse:  a mobile not-for-profit -based music practice, performance and recording space that allows people to make music.

Moving Picturessponsored by The Patricia Tindale Legacy to the RSA

  • Winner of the Patricia Tindale Legacy Award:
    Dan Palmer, BA Graphic Design at Canterbury Christ Church University, for
    Kinetic Typography (Curiosity audio)
  • Joint winner of the Patricia Tindale Legacy Award:
    Ziaul Haque, BA (Hons) Motion Graphics at University of Huddersfield, for
    Design is more than meets the eye (Design and Society audio)
  • Joint winner of the Patricia Tindale Legacy Award:
    Georgina Venning, BA (Hons) Graphic Design at Arts University Bournemouth, for
    Exploration and Discovery (Curiosity audio)
  • Winners of the RSA Staff Choice Award:
    Libby Parfitt and Dominic Okah, BA (Hons) Graphic Design at University of the West of England, for
    Curious Owls (Curiosity audio)

Water for All, sponsored by Unilever

  • Joint winner of the Unilever Award:
    Christopher Rothera MEng Product Design and Manufacture at University of Nottingham for
    Sustainable Filtration Kit: a water purification solution utilising local resources. The kit is a 5 litre, robust container with a two-lid system that produces high quality carbon from scrap wood which is then used to filter contaminated water.
  • Joint winners of Unilever Award:
    Karina Jensen and Selim Ozadar Media Lab Aalto University Helsinki for
    Guardians of Water: a service design solution using water sensors to provide live data on available water sources to enhance local knowledge around water management.


The Daily Diet, sponsored by Waitrose and developed in collaboration with Shift.

  • Winner of the paid internship in the design team at Waitrose:
    Cairo Hamilton BA (Hons) Graphic Design at Nottingham Trent University for
    4Dinner: an app that supports a move toward healthier eating by guiding and rewarding the user throughout the initial change and beyond, providing prompts, recipes, suggestions and advice through a 21-day challenge period.
  • Winners of the RSA Fellows’ Award and mentoring sessions at Shift:
    April Bale and Holly Eardley BA Graphic Design at Kingston University for
    Tuck Stop: a travelling snack shop offering school children an alternative healthy snack on their journey between home and school.

Human by Nature, sponsored by the Eden Project

  • Joint winner of the paid internship at the Eden Project and featured in ‘Invisible You – the Human Microbiome’ exhibition at the Eden Project:
    Katy Green
    BA Design for Industry at Northumbria University for
    BabyBiome: a product (special blanket for babies born by Caesarean) and campaign designed to help people better understand how to nurture a healthy human microbiome from birth.
  • Joint Winner of the paid internship at the Eden Project and featured in ‘Invisible You – the Human Microbiome’ exhibition at the Eden Project:
    James Washington BA Graphic Design at Buckinghamshire New University for
    Inner Garden: an all-encompassing health brand that aims to help people reshape the body’s internal flora back to a more natural state and teaches users about healthy lifestyle changes.

Fair Play, sponsored by Springetts Brand Consultants

  • Winner of the paid internship at Springetts Brand Consultants:
    Lisa Hornsey BA Design for Industry at Northumbria University for
    Squiggle: a gender neutral playhouse made from chalkboard that allows children to bring their imagination to life and transform the toy by drawing on it. Squiggle is ecologically produced, designed for a longer product life, and the packaging is made from 100% recycled and biodegradable elements.
  • Winner of the Natracare Award:
    Christopher Doyle BA Product Design at Northampton University for
    Morty: a multifunctional educational toy product with four modes of use. Morty’s circular design incorporates packaging and upcycling of household waste as part of the play experience, and encourages a regenerative cycle of play that minimises waste.

Mobility City, sponsored by PriestmanGoode

  • Winner of the paid internship at PriestmanGoode:
    Rebecca Grover BA Graphic Design at Kingston University for
    London Accessible: a service that provides live accessibility information, enabling users to plan their journeys on the go. The service integrates with existing mainstream station information and journey planning apps.
  • Winner of the RSA Fellows’ Award:
    Tom Cross BA Graphic Design at Falmouth University for
    Guidelines: a wayfinding system for London Underground interchanges. Colour coded guidelines on the floors and escalators indicate which platform they lead to. The system streamlines all pedestrian traffic whilst being optimised for long cane users via sensors.

Heritage by Design, sponsored by Green Room

  • Winners of the paid internship at Green Room:
    Jenny Johnson and Erik Winterburn BA Graphic Design, University of the West of England for
    The Dialect Heritage Group: Ee Bah Gum! – a guide and phrase book as a means for recording and preserving the Yorkshire dialect as dialect holds an important role in the preservation of heritage.
  • Winner of the Patricia Tindale Legacy Award:
    Kazz Morohashi MA Communications Design, Norwich University of the Arts for
    Walkies – an innovative digital heritage mapping and storytelling project made for children, by children, which explores new ways of engaging with heritage and empowers children to think, articulate and define their own notion of heritage.

 

1 Comments

Join the discussion

Please login to post a comment or reply.

Don't have an account? Click here to register.