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Design Factory Global Network

Design Factory London is Brunel’s new innovation initiative focused on making these ideas a reality. 

Brunel University London has now joined the Design Factory Global Network (DFGN,, the first higher education institution in the UK to obtain membership of this network. DFGN is a worldwide association of 33 design-led innovation hubs at universities and research organisations across Europe, North America, South America, Asia and Australia. 

Design Factory London are creating a collaborative innovation centre in Brunel with the three objectives in mind:

  • Teaching human-centred, collaborative innovation to students from all disciplines across the university
  • Partner with external organisations from all sectors in developing innovations centred on real-world challenges, opportunities and challenges set by organisations themselves.
  • Collaborate across the Design Factory Global Network to develop innovation solutions together, working across national and professional discipline boundaries.

Innovation is no longer the sole concern of technology-led organisations, it is increasingly acknowledged that both collaboration between disciplines and human-centred thinking are key success factors in many types of innovation; product innovation, services innovation, digital platform or even social innovation. These twin principles of collaboration and human-centred thinking is at the core of Design Factory London’s approach to innovation. 

A recent example of this sort of innovation collaboration is in the recent ‘Loneliness Innovation Challenge’, an initiative undertaken by over 80 students drawn from Design Factories based in universities in Israel, Latvia, The Netherlands and of course Brunel University London.  Over 4 days, working virtually across time-zones, students working in small international teams undertook research, ideas generation, virtual prototyping and  solution  evaluation,  resulting in a diverse range of practical solutions for new products, digital platforms and  services to help combat loneliness in the Elderly and  Gen-Z populations. All of the solutions were informed by a clear understanding of the needs of those for whom the solutions are intended to help, what we call, turning empathy into innovation through collaboration.

design factory network map
design factory network map
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design factory network partners

If the idea of working with our students on your innovation challenge is of interest, or if you simply find out more about how we work, please contact us at

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