PhD programme in industrial design

Our PhD Programme in Industrial Design is aimed at educating the design researcher in terms of both depth and width. A certain width is ensured through a set of mandatory courses in design research methodology, history, philosophy and user-centred design, as well as through more general courses in philosophy of science, ethics and pedagogics. Two-thirds of the four-year programme is completely tailored to the individual student to ensure significant specialisation and expertise.

Our research education is about understanding and extending the present and future foundations of design research and practice. Through the research education at UID, designers build advanced skills in crafting practical, theoretical and methodological research contributions to the field of design that will shape the discipline for decades to come.

BW Brendon Clark                     BW Johan Redström

Brendon Clark                                          Johan Redström
Director of PhD studies                          Final examiner for PhD education


The PhD programme comprises 240 ECTS-credits, and equals 4 years of full time studies.  Since all PhD students at UID dedicate 80% of their employment to their studies and 20% to teaching or other departemental work, the time is extended to 5 years and comprises courses, research, dissertation work and teaching or other departmental work. PhD students do not pay any tuition fees, and are employed by Umeå University during their PhD education.

All PhD students have their work places at UID, in the Research Studio, together with UID staff engaged in research and artistic development work. Each PhD student has a main supervisor at UID or closely affiliated department at Umeå University, and an assisting supervisor. Some PhD students also have external supervisors with specific professional or academic competence in their area of research.

General syllabus for PhD education

All new third cycle students follow the general syllabus for PhD education in industrial design established in 2014:

Third cycle students enrolled before 2014 follow the general syllabus for PhD education in industrial design that was valid at the time of their acceptance:

Allmän studieplan för utbildning på forskarnivå i Industridesign (only in Swedish)

Every doctoral student must have an individual study plan (ISP). It is a tool for planning and follow-up of each doctoral student´s education. The doctoral student and the supervisors formulate the ISP togehter, and must perform a follow-up at least once a year. All information in the ISP must conform to the rules in the Legal framework at Umeå University.

PhD studies information









  • Apply for artistic development work/travel funding

    UID staff can apply for funding for artistic development work projects, for collecting or producing materials for research, and travel funding for conferences.

    Deadlines for application are: 

    September 10
    October 10
    December 10
    January 10
    March 10
    May 10

    Applications are sent to the UID Subject development committee

    Application form (Word file)
    Policy 2017-05-11

  • Ongoing PhD projects

    The current projects carried out within our research education in industrial design are found here»