"Research is to see what everybody else has seen, and to think what nobody else has thought" Albert Szent-Gyorgyi
Recently the Design Research Society, DRS, announced that Umeå Institute of Design will be hosting the biennial conference in 2014. "It is truly exceptional that we have the honour to host this prominent conference, not only will it be take place in Europe, but here in Umeå at our institute", says Rector Anna Valtonen about the announcement.
The Design Research Society was founded in 1966 and is a society for the design research community worldwide, with a design research network in around 40 countries. It is the largest and most noteworthy design research society in the world.
One of DRS& most important recurring events is to arrange a global conference every other year, a conference that brings together the whole design research sphere. Last year the conference took place in Montreal and in 2012 it will be held in Bangkok.
Hosting this significant conference will be tremendously beneficial, not only for Umeå Institute of Design, but for the Swedish design research overall.
Umeå Institute of Design is one of Sweden&s few design education environments with post-graduate studies in industrial design. There is a strong tradition of applied research in collaboration with external partners, and recently the basic research in design was increased with several new PhD, post doc and faculty positions. The research school is intended to be an integral part of the conference.
Design research in Scandinavia is also manifested in the Nordic co-operation within NORDES. This is an organization that has as its goal and vision to further design research and education in the Nordic countries. The presence of the DRS conference in Sweden would further inspire and engage the community already engaged in NORDES.
Today there is a lot of exiting new design research in Sweden and Scandinavia that in a fruitful way could function as an inspiration to the international design research community. At the same time we see the DRS conference in Sweden as a way to have a great impact on the Swedish and Scandinavian research, by bringing the best design researchers in the world. This will clearly have a significant impact on the recognition and status of design research in Sweden and Scandinavia.
The Arts Campus architecture, with larch facades and open areas, will be a perfect setting and a dynamic environment that probably in itself will in inspire conference participants and promote the Scandinavian design approach throughout the event.