Idea Manager for Innovative Design:
the DesignAustra case

Design Austria, in FiberEUse, used the Idea Manager tool to enable the collection of feedback from experts and from interested potential customers, about innovative designs of products that needed to be made with composites fibers. The ideas had been proposed by designers of the New Design University di St. Pölten on the themes: transport, furniture and city life.

Idea Manager for Innovative Desig

The Business Sector:

The Designers innovative proposals should fit the FiberEUse scope, which covers the need of current manufacturing companies producing high complexity composite made parts and striving with market requirements of high quality products at competitive prices.

FiberEUse value-chain oriented circular economy strategy offers the opportunity of increasing the manufacturing efficiency and economical, environmental and social sustainability, producing a significant “game change” from a linear make-take-dispose approach to new circular economy business models.

The organizazions involved:

Designaustria represents the Austrian design scene on both national and international levels, seeking to highlight its achievements; it raises awareness for Austrian products and services and thus contributes to strengthening Austria as an industrial location. Through exhibitions, communication, publications and public relations designaustria strengthens the awareness of design in the country and highlights the benefits of design in society and economy.

The New Design University St. Pölten (NDU) was founded by the Lower Austrian Chamber of Commerce and its Business Development Institute in 2004, and it is a young, future-oriented private university. As an international destination for quality education in the fields of design, technology and business, the NDU trains creative thinkers who advance social change and explore tomorrow’s work and design practice today. The university attaches much importance to combining theory with creative practice.

new design university

The Challenge:

In general, designers generates ideas which can be tested and analysed just from a few number of stakeholders. It is even quite hard to have material producers involvement and large scale potential customers feedbacks. Discussions, when happens, are usually not structured and not shared for comparison.

The solution:

Through the Idea Manager and the FiberEUse project, the designers, which are all material experts, had the opportunity to cooperate with recyclers and remanufacturers of composites materials, receiving suggestions and tips on their ideas at a preliminary stage. A further development of the ideas, having integrated the feedbacks, allowed the sharing of the concepts through specific surveys with potential customers and stakeholders community, in order to enlarge the quality of feedbacks even to usage and potential market analysis.

The benefits:

Thanks to the Idea Manager the designers can interact directly with potential manufacturers and customers. This can happen even during the idea generation phase, having the opportunity to reformulate some aspects in order to better fit feasibility and interest.

It is also possible to reach more persons, even customers and potential customers, through different channels, as direct, social medias, blog and forums, and to have cross feedbacks thanks to the possibility to “like” and comment others ideas.

The level of feedback that can be collected is variable, from simple “likes” note, to general comments, up to specific and detailed surveys.

Prototyping activities become even more simple, as a first feedback incorporation can be preliminary to the creation of prototype. This allows the reduction of the number of wrong pieces as samples and even as real products which people doesn’t like.

Idea Manager for Innovative Desig