New in Town: The Rotterdam New Talent Award

Willem de Kooning Academy
Tue 5 Jun

The Rotterdam New Talent Award is a new annual prize for students graduating from the Design Academy Eindhoven and the Willem de Kooning Academy.

This unique award helps young designers transform their graduation project into the stepping stone of their professional career during a sponsored residency of five months. In collaboration with experienced local partners seeking for impactful innovation, the recipients will develop their projects in Rotterdam, with an outstanding vision on relevant society matters. Rotterdam New Talent Award is open to the BA graduates of both schools and MA graduates of the Design Academy Eindhoven from the school year 2017-2018, who are starting an entrepreneurial venture in the field of product and/or service design.


  • You graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven or the Willem de Kooning Academy in the academic year 2017-2018.
  • You want to become a designer and start as an independent entrepreneur.
  • You want your graduation project to become your first professional venture.
  • You want to develop and implement your graduation project in Rotterdam.
  • You are available from September 3rd, 2018 until February 3rd, 2019 included.


Each project will be evaluated according to the quality of its concept, process and execution, to the relevance of the issue it addresses, to the impact it can have on its target audience, and to its potential to transform into a successful entrepreneurial venture. One applicant per school will receive Rotterdam New Talent Award, and one graduate will get the “Jury Prize”.


Each award recipient will develop his/her graduation project during a five months residency, and benefit from:

  • 600€ per month for the project's Research & Development;
  • the mentorship of a Rotterdam-based expert;
  • a full membership at The Commune (studio + workshop);
  • the access to The Commune training & program;
  • a subscription to the Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship “Get Started" programme;
  • the opportunity to exhibit process and final developments of the project.


  • All candidates must fill in the application form with one of their graduation projects before June 28th, 2018, 23:59.
  • The pre-selected designers will be invited to pitch their project in front of a qualified jury, on July 3rd at The Commune (Keilestraat 5a, 3029BP Rotterdam)
  • The winners will receive the award during a ceremony held in each school and start the award residency in September 2018.

Jury 2018

Isaac Monté, product and concept designer;
Renee Marcelis, programme leader at Bouwkeet and chairman at R'damse Nieuwe;
Tamar Shafrir, design writer and researcher at Het Nieuwe Instituut;
Chantal Olffers, coordinator roadmap Next Economy at the Municipality of Rotterdam;
Eléonore Delisse + Laura Ferriere, designers and creators of the Award.

Rotterdam New Talent Award is a project by Eléonore Delisse and Laura Ferriere (This is BOUW design studio) and is supported by Citylab 010.