IED students lead the social role of design in improving living conditions

IED – Istituto Europeo di Design presents the best student projects

IED – Istituto Europeo di Design presents a selection of the best exploratory projects of the school’s undergraduate degrees in Product design and interior design. Through their projects, the students seek to orient the social role of design on subjects ranging from waste management and sustainable consumption to nature, through the improvement of the living conditions of the poorest.

Reddo by Francesco Lucini

all images courtesy of IED – Istituto Europeo di Design


Working across different fields, the students followed the common thread of designing products that can be used by everyone, regardless of ability, age or status in life. They analyzed with an innovative perspective how to manage the different types of waste to make their products and give these materials a second life even more beneficial and socially impacting than the original one. IED projects are fully aware of how design fits into a system made up of humans and their needs. All the projects have as a common core the desire to seek solutions to improve environmental, social and cultural conditions in order to create a positive impact, this is what we aim for at IED: to build a better future.

IED students lead the social role of design in improving living conditions
Francesco Lucini’s Reddo transforms oyster shells into concrete 3D printed structures

Reddo by Francesco Lucini is a project of investigation and speculation on the use of oyster shells as raw material. The objective is to design a product centered on nature in order to generate a circular economy for this type of natural waste. The need to find a second destination for oyster shells came from the discovery of the massive amount of waste produced each year; for this reason, Reddo opens a debate on different topics, such as waste management, coastal erosion and the health of the marine environment. Through the use of computer technologies and new manufacturing techniques, the project transforms the shells into 3D printed concrete structures to offer a solution for the regions of the world most sensitive to climate change. For its creativity, the product received a special mention at the Supersalone 2022 Grad Show exhibition and was presented at the Salone Satellite 2022.

IED students lead the social role of design in improving living conditions
Sway by Xueyu Ji is a measuring instrument for the blind

To balance is a measuring instrument that transforms visual information into auditory information. Measuring is a challenge for blind people and the products currently on the market are designed for sighted people. Sway in return, gives visual feedback with a simple and understandable mechanism: the lid which rests on the container like a rocker acts like a measuring spoon. When the weight of the liquid or solid it carries exceeds 50 grams, it tips down and empties and when it returns, it bumps against the edge of the container, emitting a sound to warn the user.

IED students lead the social role of design in improving living conditions
Sbun-Design: Rethinking Plastic by Andrea List, Leonardo Santambrogio and Matteo Mulas, makes 3D printing sustainable

Sbun-Design: rethinking plastic by Andrea List, Leonardo Santambrogio and Matteo Mulas, is a 3D printer extruder, experiential website and transparent 3D printer. With the help of the extruder, the printing process becomes sustainable as CO2 emissions are reduced, while the website shapes the printing experience by creating high-value products in collaboration with designers. The 3D printing production chain generally consists of three stages: plastic waste; shred it into flakes and press it into pellets; and the processing of the final filament – which is essentially the base material for printing.

Sbun-Design: Rethinking plastic in progress

The young IED designers behind the start-up aim precisely to shorten the plastic production chain, thus reducing material costs and the amount of CO2 emitted during the process. Thanks to a unique extrusion system developed by the authors themselves, a 3D printer designed ad hoc and adapted to this system, aims for maximum transparency by showing itself to the user. The interface with the end customer is an experiential site that offers the sale of Sbun-Design products, while showing the real-time progress of the complements thanks to a special webcam positioned on the printer.

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