81874 - Industrial Design 1

Academic Year 2023/2024

  • Moduli: Flaviano Celaschi (Modulo 1) Roberto Montanari (Modulo 2)
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures (Modulo 1) Traditional lectures (Modulo 2)
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Advanced Design (cod. 9256)

Learning outcomes

The course aims to teach how to govern the articulated representations useful to allow the manufacturability and industrial feasibility checks of the product. At the end of the course, the student: • will be able to exploit the potential of automatic representation; • can effectively represent the design choices made.

Course contents

The car has been the symbol of the 20th century. A pervasive symbol that has determined the shape of the territory and the city, has connoted the global lifestyle, has conditioned a large part of consumption processes, and has defined the characteristics of the advanced capitalist production system.

The first two decades of the new millennium are strongly urging important and necessary transformations in the means and systems of mobility, as well as in the infrastructural and energy apparatus it requires to function.

The automobile is the crossroads and epicentre of these transformations and must be able to take them on board and relaunch them by radically redefining many of its components.

Of these, the most fragile component of the system that makes the motor vehicle work is the human being; most road accidents are due to human error, many of them induced by distraction; travelling by car has lost much of its glamour and in many cases (despite the improvement of living conditions in the passenger compartment) causes discomfort and fatigue, especially because of the intensity of traffic that comes to 'steal' almost 1/5 of human life. Pollution by fine particles is so high that life in many contemporary cities is becoming less and less tolerable, and energy needs increasingly condition the climate and the future of the Earth.

The semiotic and symbolic value of the vehicle has transformed over time. In the early years of its diffusion, the vehicle was an exclusive good and symbol of prestige and power; then a mass good and an element of social differentiation. The conditions of use and safety have improved significantly (better conditions of the passenger compartment, greater safety, first passive and then active) and especially in recent years the vehicle is transforming its nature of a proprietary good into a service good.

Telematics technologies, connectivity, enhanced sensor technology and research into vehicle dynamics, artificial intelligence and material studies, to name but a few of the most salient aspects, have significantly increased the complexity of the vehicle. While bringing with it complex technological equipment such as that mentioned above, the car nevertheless retains on the other hand elements of tradition that prefigure situations of inadequacy between the vehicle, the users and the surrounding complexity.

For these reasons, it seems to us that it is useful to try to rethink the relationship between car and human being by trying to focus not on the vehicle platform but on the components that materialise this relationship (i.e. habitability system, safety systems, control systems, feedback systems, entertainment systems, comfort systems). Here we will focus in particular on human behavior in work activities closely related to the topic of mobility and transportation.


The richness that the three lecturers can bring to this teaching workshop is characterised by the integration of the 3 areas of knowledge that converge in the analysis and development of these projects: product design, process and systems engineering, cognitive ergonomics and Human Machine Interaction.

Therefore, the students, divided into groups of 3 members each, will be prioritised by an assigned lecturer who will assist the progress of the projects. All research and project advances, at the end of the phase, will be shared with all three lecturers at the same time in order to better integrate the competences and return the complexity of the subject to the students.

Contents referable to Prof. Flaviano Celaschi's module

The module expresses contents referable to two sets that interact in this workshop
- design-driven innovation methodologies (Advanced Design, User's Studies, Design Thinking, Codesign, anticipation and applied futures sciences);
- systemic analysis of the automotive product and of the opportunities and problems that appear to be plannable by the contemporary designer.

The activity will be enriched by the analysis of video clips commented by the lecturer and guests for the seminar session.

Contents referring to Prof. Leonardo Frizziero's module

The module is characterised by the description and application of methodologies typical of Industrial Engineering, applicable to products in the automotive field. In particular:

- IDeS Industrial Design Structure, for the organisation of an industrial project
- DFSS Design For Six Sigma, for the systematic implementation of project phases
- SDE Stylistic Design Engineering, for style-oriented design
- QFD Quality Function Deloyment, oriented to market analysis
- Benchmarking, oriented towards competition analysis
- Top Flop Analysis for defining innovation objectives

The activities will take place within projects simulating the realisation of a product in a company environment.

Contents referable to the module of Prof. Roberto Montanari

The subject of this part of the course is to learn the fundamentals of the so-called On-Board Information, that part of vehicle design that concerns the interaction between the driver and the traditional and innovative content that is provided to him/her while driving, both in support of driving itself and for a better user experience.
The module intends to investigate how the epochal transformations of the vehicle, autonomous driving, electrification, connectivity between vehicles and infrastructure, active and preventive safety systems, are directing designers to rethink many of the interactive practices inside and outside the cockpit. These interactive practices particularly concern the Human Machine Interface (HMI) of the car and the ergonomic processes, mainly cognitive, that must be introduced to face new design challenges.
The activity includes the study of the technologies that are changing the vehicle (automation, electrification and connectivity), the interaction technologies that are emerging (innovative displays, voice and gesture interaction systems, etc.) and the principles of cognitive ergonomics and interaction design needed to design new HMIs. The study phase will be flanked by a virtual prototyping and validation phase using ergonomic and experiential testing methodologies. Naturally, the classroom work will be accompanied by cases and testimonials.


  • Celaschi, F., Non Industrial Design, Luca Sossella editore, Milano 2017
  • Casoni, G., Celaschi, F., Human Body design, Franco Angeli, Milano 2020
  • Norman, D., Il Design del futuro, Apogeo, Milano 2008
  • Frizziero, L. et al., Developing innovative crutch using IDeS (industrial design structure) methodology, Applied Sciences (Switzerland), Vol. 9, Iss. 23, 1 December 2019, nr. 5032
  • Frizziero, L., Liverani, A., Nannini, L., Design for six sigma (DFSS) applied to a new eco-motorbike, Machines, Volume 7, Issue 3, 2019, nr. 52
  • Montanari, R., Interaction Design nei sistemi intelligenti, MIMESIS, Milano 2020

Further references will be given by the teacher during the lessons.

You can see the projects realised in past years on the Mobility Contemporary System website

Teaching methods

The course is divided into 3 phases:

  • PHASE 1: seminar (ex cathedra lessons and seminars with face-to-face or digital guests)
  • PHASE 2: analysis (the groups explore the topics that have been agreed with the teacher in both filed and desk modalities)
  • PHASE 3: design and prototype (the analysis finds synthesis and form and focuses on the solution)

At the end of each phase, a presentation is required in the form of a summary slideshow that will be presented to all the students and will be evaluated as an intermediate progress assessment for each group.

Assessment methods

The exam consists in the evaluation of the final result of the project which will be mediated with the evaluations that the teachers will collectively give to the intermediate phase of analysis and to the active participation of students at all stages of the course.

Teaching tools

  • Frontal lessons with slide show projection
  • Visits to companies
  • Testimonials and interventions by expert guests on thesubject
  • Collective and individual reviews

Office hours

See the website of Flaviano Celaschi

See the website of Roberto Montanari


Responsible consumption and production

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.