Design Reactor - Berlin

Project information

Index: 0271R1
Priority:1: Innovation and the knowledge economy
Sub Theme:Entrepreneurship and SMEs
Location GERMANY BERLIN Berlin

Topic of the practice

Developing interdisciplinary cooperation.The aim is to build innovative co-operation between small and medium-sized companies and designers in Berlin.It is about establishing collaboration between companies, craft workers, the University of the Arts, and sales to create new products. It is characterized by experimental combinations of processing techniques, advanced materials and manufacturing processes.

Good Practice Information

Berlin’s University of the Arts (design department) and Berlin’s Senate Department for Economics, and Women’s Issues were the initiators of Design Reaktor Berlin. The Design Reaktor Berlin increases the transfer of know-how between Art University and SMEs in Berlin and enhances business and innovation capacity. It brings students, professors and SMEs together to develop new innovative products and services. Accordingly, Design Reaktor Berlin has a high economic impact.Then attention turns to planning the communication strategies and the means of distribution. The Design Reaktor Berlin works to improve the efficiency of the development process and enhance the products’ identity.The role of the city administration is to be a moderator and enabler in the process.

Evidence of success

For today, the project involves the following partners: 52 SMEs in Berlin - from a Mozzarella cheese dairy, an engraver to a rubber goods manufacturer; from a car customising and tuning shop to a suitcase a pasta maker; from low to high tech. It also includes 11 chairs at the University of the Arts and 150 students.Regarding the funding 50% came from the city administration and 50% from the university.Success factors:
● excellent mixture of competences / interpersonal skills and team members
● effect of intensifying the co-working relationships between designers and companies creating multiple communication channels
● innovative approach connecting different design disciplines and working experiences
● open innovation approach
● collaborative authorships
● dynamic and flexible steering of the project
● involvement of marketing experts in the development of new products
The Design Reaktor was also designated as a good practice project of the European Year of Creativity and Innovation.

Contact details to obtain further information on the practice

Marc Piesbergen

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