Research will be undertaken in the areas of basic and applied design thinking and innovation. Applied design thinking research will focus primarily on topics from among the 17 SDGs, including health, education, energy, and climate action. Innovation research is targeted on the creation of high-impact products and startups (product and venture design) that translate research into practice.
"Alongside artificial intelligence, design research is an key driver of innovation in sustainability," says Ralf Herbrich, professor and managing director of HPI, who is also a member of the steering committee. "Bringing talented PhD students of our two institutions together that are committed to the SDGs will foster breakthroughs in this societally very important area."
The research collaboration is supported by the Hasso Plattner Foundation and set up over eight years, with an interim evaluation after four years. The funded program will entail semi-annual research workshops, quarterly virtual seminars and an annual student exchange between both institutes.