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Qingdao: “Hyperconnectivity 3.0” Workshop with HAIER

Qingdao: “Hyperconnectivity 3.0” Workshop with HAIER

From April 26 to 30, 2010 34 students from the Master’s program in Cross-cultural Design showed their creativity and know-how as designers/managers during a workshop on user experience jointly run with a leading Chinese household equipment manufacturer: HAIER.

Students from our Master’s program in Cross-cultural Design brainstorm during the Haier workshop

HAIER takes students to a higher level

The faculty of our China-based Master’s curriculum in Cross-Cultural Design are always on the look-out for opportunities to have students share ideas and working methods, encompass a variety of cultural environments and experience new situations; these are the very bases of our teaching.

Each semester workshops are organized in collaboration with 2 kinds of partners:

- universities: we invite guests from major universities very influent in the Chinese design scene (TONGJI, TSINGHUA and SHANDONG Universities)

- companies: we identify quality business partners and sollicit them on specific issues.

The Hyperconnectivity 3.0 workshop was supervized by a design manager from Haier, 3 faculty members from guest Chinese universities and Frédéric Bonin, Course Leader for the Master’s Program cross-cultural Design. It kept 34 Master’s students – 17 Chinese, 17 French – very busy for 5 full days.

This semester our partner was HAIER, a renowned leading Chinese company. Third worldwide "white goods" manufacturer (household appliances: refrigerators, washing machines, etc.), HAIER features no less than 15,000 items.


Master’s students in Cross-cultural Design pooling ideas

User experience as a vehicle for innovation

The workshop was centered on how to enhance kitchen appliances and make them attractive to Y generation (post 80’s) users. Participants came up with all-encompassing solutions in which user experience serves as a vehicle for innovation.

The concepts were then presented to a team of designers and managers from HAIER who evaluated their plus sides for end-users, for HAIER and for the brand based on a set of accurate criteria.

The week ended on a cheerful note with an award ceremony. Three teams were rewarded:

- the most creative team,

- the team who implemented the best cross-cultural management,

- the team with the best market viability.

Frédéric Bonin, Course Leader – Master’s program Cross-cultural Design