Speculative Design Futures

What is Speculative Design Futures?
As design, in all disciplines, evolves to cope with new developments in technology (artificial intelligence, immersive virtual environments, digital identities, etc.), the urgency of climate crisis, and changing legal, social and ethical contexts, it is vital that designers continue to upskill and future proof their practice. Designers are problem solvers and creative solution proposers who make a difference to people’s daily life, environment, and interactions.

Our postgraduate certificate course is suitable for designers from all disciplines interested in learning how to tackle the challenges of designing for uncertain futures. The course will equip designers with the skills to critically engage with complexity and uncertainty and to create speculative design prototypes, narratives and probes that give them the confidence to address future design challenges.

During the course, you will:

Be guided through a range of different speculative and critical design thinking, approaches, processes and methods as you learn about how to map time and describe future design contexts.
Explore new ways to practice as you critically explore changing and evolving human, ecological and technological perspectives.
Apply a range of interdisciplinary research methods to question and analyse the social, environmental, economic and political impact of predicted future trends and emerging technologies.

This course is currently offered in collaboration with Creative Futures Academy (CFA). CFA is a ground-breaking partnership between: The National College of Art and Design, University College Dublin, and the Institute of Art, Design + Technology. Our tailored programmes and micro courses offer access to expertise and networks across the three leading creative institutions and our industry partners. Learn with us as we experiment, innovate and respond to change.

Subjects taught

Course content will include:
• Introduction to Speculative Design, approaches, philosophies and case studies
• Defining speculative goals and values
• Scoping a speculative design futures project
• Speculative and Critical Design principles
• Futures research
• Design Fiction principles
• Mapping time and systems
• World building
• Emotional design
• Experimental design prototypes
• Participatory group exercises and charrette
• Project presentations

Entry requirements

Min Entry Requirements
Undergraduate qualification of 2nd Class Honours or higher at Honours Degree level in design or a related discipline.

Applicants may also be considered provided that they can demonstrate Honours Degree equivalence, which can be verified through our RPL [recognition of prior learning] process.

Are there any Materials / Equipment requirements?
You will need to have a laptop and Adobe Creative Suite.

Portfolio: Yes

Application dates

2024 applications will open in spring 2024.

IADT operates a rolling admissions policy for graduate taught courses, with decisions issued in 4 weeks after a submitted and complete application is received. An application is incomplete until you provide all required items on the checklist (including the application fee, if applicable).

Generally, courses will remain open to applications until all places are filled.

Please complete the online application form.

As part of the application, you will be required to provide a CV with details of:

Education / Qualifications,
Professional experience, and
Creative work (e.g., a link to a portfolio website).

More details
  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Certificate

  • Attendance type


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