Insights

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Floris van der Marel

Floris is design researcher skilled in creative facilitation and design coaching combining Participatory Design and research practices to contribute to political activism by amplifying unheard voices and challenging power imbalances and normative hierarchies.

Based on data collected in the Design+ project Floris is contributing to our understanding of designers’ experiences in large tech organizations as they attempt to challenge the status quo in engineering-heavy organizational cultures and in DesignBites he’s diving into the creative responses of entrepreneurs and their communities tackling the pandemic. He’s also continuing working with participatory design in hospital settings based on a 2019-20 visit in Design Factory Melbourne.

Floris draws from a MSc degree in design research from Delft University of Technology and Middle East Technical University, as well as a BSc degree in industrial design engineering. Prior to joining Aalto Design Factory, he worked at the Frisian Design Factory in Leeuwarden, Netherlands.

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JoelFloris van der Marel
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Tua Björklund

Connecting theory and practice

Tua is one of the co-founders of the Design Factory. As a professor of practice appointed to the Design Factory and the head of its research, her work revolves around understanding, teaching and developing co-creation efforts, turning ideas into improvements in organizations and education.

Tua heads research at the Design Factory, looking into sustainable design practices, innovation in organisations, co-creation and the impact of the Design Factory. In addition, she manages the externally funded research projects Design Plus and DesignBites, investigating how design thinking can change the way companies organise for innovation and how collaborative experimentation can give rise to new opportunities. She is the Aalto lead for Cataly(c)st, a Nordic initiative for educating change makers for a more sustainable future. Outside of Aalto University, Tua is one of the associate editors of the Journal of Engineering Education, the highest ranking journal in engineering education.

On the teaching front, Tua is a part of Design Factory efforts to promote developing university teaching. She teaches responsible innovation in Mechanical Engineering in Society, Design thinking in Innovation Projects, Service design tools for creating change, Research in Design and Innovation, and design innovation in executive and professional education.

Tua has a DSc degree in work psychology from the Aalto University School of Science, and an MA degree in cognitive science from the University of Helsinki.

Publications on the Design Factory

Recent journal publications

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