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The Zollverein School conducts research.   6_flipchart_detail.jpg   The close link between business and design is also reflected in the Zollverein School’s research targets. Research at the Zollverein School is design-oriented. In other words it focuses on the realities of economic life. With its broad definition of design, the Zollverein School conducts research into the interfaces between society, technology and business in a problem- and project-oriented manner.

Business projects

These research activities are aimed at business projects in particular: the Zollverein School tackles issues that arise directly within companies. How can faults in corporate communication be eradicated when the structure of a company is altered? How can decision-making and organisational structures be designed to suit a particular situation? In close co-operation with companies, the Zollverein School comes up with problem-specific design solutions and elaborates economic processes on the basis of practical questions. This means that companies can not only direct queries to the design school but also allow their employees to participate actively in research and development projects.

Ten graduates will also be able to work towards a doctorate in special programmes at the Zollverein School. The intention is that they will work on research and development projects with employees from co-operating companies and external project managers. The doctoral candidates will be funded by research projects awarded to the Zollverein School by external companies.

Design projects

As far as the design projects are concerned, students may choose their own research topics. This type of design science is based on a broader understanding of design, which includes discipline-oriented basic principles and applied research, and views both in a problem- and project-oriented light. This means that the research will be practical and will gain its impetus from the theory of communication. With its main focus on the sciences of the artificial, new media and management, design science will result in general research into innovation that will open up a third branch of science alongside the humanities and natural sciences.

Young scientists, entrepreneurs, designers and artists are called upon to analyse communications and network processes and to come up with possible scenarios. It is also important that they systematically observe and describe current key qualifications such as the understanding of visual communication. Such analyses and designs will track down design concepts and context movements in various communication processes with a view to contributing to the understanding of our cultural and economic development.