Ah, WdKA Lifestyle Transformation Design. The one department at the academy that cannot be defined or explained in one single breath.
How are lifestyles influenced by the dynamic nature of today’s societies? What is the impact of innovation on our daily lives? Can we change lifestyles in such a way that they can better face the challenges of the future?
Humanity needs to reconsider its position towards nature (climate change, natural resources), towards society (personal relationships, ageing demographics, cultural diversity, overpopulation), towards technology (digital networks, robotics, biotechnology), etc. A number of significant new developments such as the ‘new economy’ and the ‘sharing economy’ confront us with the vital necessity of changing our lifestyles. We are now heading into a period of further transformations that will deeply impact our lives on a personal, social and economic level.
Within the discipline of lifestyle transformation, design students conduct research of the conscious and unconscious behaviour and needs of human beings – groups as well as individuals – and of their identity and values in relation to the given context, to society, and to the economy. The results of such research provide valuable information and insights into the lifestyles of groups and individuals in the past, present and future.
Many businesses, institutes, brands and even political parties understand the importance of obtaining information on lifestyles, on the behaviour and needs of groups and individuals, and on ways of influencing these lifestyles. This makes it possible for them to arrive at well-informed decisions. This also requires the expertise of lifestyle transformation designers who are able to think creatively – out of the box – and to come up with solutions based on completely different points of view or approaches.
A lifestyle transformation designer achieves this by debriefing the assignment, by questioning and critiquing the underlying values at every step of the process, and by interpreting the information obtained in order to predict future behaviour and needs. This process is based on the method of design thinking. The lifestyle transformation designer formulates innovative and wide-ranging solutions and/or ideas for simple and complex market challenges, focusing on the transformation of lifestyles or of the market itself.
Communication of these ideas or solutions plays a crucial role in increasing awareness and generating impact. The end result of this communication is always a visual product (2D and/or 3D). Such visualisations constitute a direct form of communication that helps generate public interest and opens up new perspectives.
The curriculum addresses a wide range of topics: mobility, the knowledge economy, technologies, food, health, relationships, retail, art and culture, etc. Representatives from the professional market will participate in the projects as clients or partners, sharing with you their extensive knowledge and experience. This professional market is extremely diverse, from commercial businesses to municipal governments, from institutes to platforms, from media to the public domain, from healthcare to education. Last but not least, you will develop a distinctive visual style of your own by assembling a comprehensive portfolio as you progress through the study programme.
Read the recent manifesto written by the Lifestyle Transformation Design students and tutors.
Knowledge & skills:
- Developed visionary skills
- Creative expression skills
- Visual communication
- Innovative solution-oriented thinking
- Capacity to analyse of social themes
- ...and more
- Product and market innovator
- Concept developer/designer
- Creative strategist
- Trend initiator and visualiser
- Trend expert
- Visual communication specialist
- ...and more
On top of the major, WdKA adds elective projects. You can choose from a wide range of contemporary subjects and issues. These projects introduce students to our three graduation profiles or Practices. We call them the Autonomous, Social and Commercial Practices.
Next to 13 majors and three Practices WdKA offers its students high-tech meeting interdisciplinary spaces - Stations. Stations are the place for creating prototypes, experimenting, remixing and improving your ideas. All of our students and staff members are welcome to work in our Stations, regardless of their major, minor, elective module or study year. In the Stations you explore the viability of your ideas and find out how to turn them into fully-functioning creations.
Cover project: Mono-eating by Aimée Jiline Selling