Sustainable Materials for Design Course


Laura Freixas

Duration // Schedule

July, 11-22 2022 (40 hours) 
10.00 a.m. – 2.15 p.m.




Basic / Intermediate


840 €


Dates may be modified and courses may be canceled depending on the evolution of the pandemic.

In the domain of design and industrial practices, materials are gaining ever more relevance as important drivers for product development and innovation, more specifically in promoting a more sustainable future and empower circular economies.

A circular economy starts at the very beginning of a product's life. Both the design phase and production processes have an impact on sourcing, resource use and waste generation throughout a product's life. This circular design approach can make products more durable or easier to repair, upgrade or remanufacture. It can help recyclers to disassemble products in order to recover valuable materials and components. Overall, it can help to save precious resources.  Circular Design involves Service Design, Product Design and also Materials Design. Most materials have an infinite lifecycle. They can be re-used, reformed and redesigned with a new purpose. By harnessing the unexplored potential of materials, we can implement social, economic, environmental and political change through a cross sector approach.

So what if we used creativity to provide better circular economy solutions through the ideation of new materials?

This ‘Circular materials design’ is a program that addresses the training and exposure of the new materials designers towards a better circular economy and their positive impact in industry or the generation of an alternative creative industry. More specifically, the aim of this course is to work developing waste-driven materials with a focus on product, fashion and interior design, by acquiring the theoretical foundations of materials, developing hands-on materials experimentation and development, and developing a communication package for its dissemination.

  • To acknowledge current context in the world of both foundational and state-of -the-art materials.
  • To understand materials characteristics from both a scientific and creative perspective
  • To address Specialist Materials Designers skills gaps.
  • To be able to experiment and acquire knowledge in materials processing.
  • To be able to recognize a material, a material state, its finish, its potential manufacturing process and possible applications in terms of functional and aesthetic qualities.
  • To adopt a comprehensive view regarding sustainability and efficiencies, in materials applications while preserving and meeting innovation driven value-added approach when developing novelty in a design project.
  • To use adequate terminology and glossary for materials and materials for circular design and to be able to communicate in a visual and engaging form a materials design project.

Laura Freixas

Laura Freixas is a researcher at Elisava Research and collaborator of the Master in Design through New Materials. Her current research work focuses on regenerative design, biofabrication and emerging materials. With a master in Design for Emergent Futures and training in both Industrial Design Engineering and Product Design at Elisava. Laura has worked in different materials innovation departments such as Puig, Vibia and Materfad. She has also participated in two European projects such as Material Designers (MaDe) and SISCODE (Remix El Barrio) with her project Organic Matters.

You may also be interested in the Master in Design through New Materials.