The class, which is in its 10th year, has allowed 325 students to work with global partners in 14 countries to create products that improve the lives of impoverished people. This year, the 40 graduate students in the course are collaborating with five global partners to manage the design of 10 new products.
Hasso Plattner Institute of Design
Sustainable Food Program Manager Dara Olmstead, who previously served as the director of Harvard’s Food Literacy Project and wrote a blog for The Boston Globe about environmental sustainability, called her new position a “dream job.”
“When you try and make change happen, that’s not easy,” conceded Steve Hilton, currently on sabbatical from his position as senior advisor for British Prime Minister David Cameron. “There are vested interests, people have different views.” Hilton, who currently serves as a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution and a visiting scholar at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, framed the decision to move across the Atlantic as personal rather than professional, in order to accommodate his wife Rachel Whetstone, a senior executive at Google.
In a series of remarks dominated by anecdotes and observations of the actions of companies that create successful products, Professor Emeritus James Adams supported his supposition that, when it comes to design, “emotions lead rather than follow.”