What is the Design Innovation in Plastics Award?
Design Innovation in Plastics Award – the longest running student plastics design award in Europe – recognises significant innovation in design from young, gifted undergraduate design students. This year, Innovate Product Design attended the Award to support the designers exhibiting at the competition.
The Design Innovation in Plastics Award is a fantastic opportunity for aspiring British design students to make a name for themselves. This year, 166 students from 20 universities registered for the competition with many of these universities having now incorporated ‘Design Innovation in Plastics’ into their coursework.
Each year, the competition has a thought-provoking theme to challenge the students’ product design skills, as well as encourage fresh, creative talent. The theme this year was ‘Products for Independent Travel’.
The inspiration came from the drastic rise in the number of people travelling with hand luggage, and therefore a greater need for more compact and multifunctional products. The challenge was to ascertain how size and comfort of travel products could be improved with innovative design, creating a less stressful travel experience.
Due to the highly competitive nature of this market students were given a strict criteria to adhere to, which meant that their products had to be: original, sustainable, cost effective to manufacture, affordable and user friendly, robust enough to withstand the challenges of any mode of travel and meet the increasing demands of security checks.
Northumbria University Student Wins Runner-Up
Dom Tindale – an exceptional designer from Northumbria University, renowned for its excellent academic reputation – was awarded runner-up by Innovate at the competition. Mr Tindale presented a unique product called Skin Watch; a wristband designed to help prevent sunburn by reminding travellers to reapply sun cream. Thus, preventing the extremely harmful effects of sun burn. According to Cancer Research UK, incidence rates of skin cancer are projected to rise by 7% in the UK between 2014 and 2035. Mr Tindale’s product is not only a demonstration of creative genius, but also a potential life saver.
Britain Trains & Retains Young Homegrown Talent
Despite Brexit blues, this is just one example of how competitions such as Design Innovations in Plastics can open doors for gifted designers such as Mr Tindale. The competition demonstrates that Britain still possesses the ability to train and retain young homegrown talent, by provoking fresh thinking and building a pipeline of exceptional talent into one of the UK’s leading sectors.