Industrial Design students push boundaries with fresh ideas

For durian, by durian: An ecological durian packaging made from 100% durian waste


Ever wondered about the fate of durian husks after the fruits inside have been devoured? If a bright idea does come into fruition, you may just see them again at your next durian binge – in another form.

Seah Li Ping, a graduating student from NUS School of Design and Environment, Division of Industrial Design (DID), was motivated to turn durian waste into a useful material. So she came up with “For durian, by durian”, an ecological durian packaging made from 100 per cent durian waste.

“Being an avid lover of durian since young, I cannot help but notice the huge heaps of husks during each durian season. This concept of an ecological packaging for durian made from durian waste is a sustainable alternative to Styrofoam,” said Li Ping.

This design is just one of the 37 works by DID’s graduating students featured on the DID Gradshow 2020 website. Themed “Moments in Time”, the show is a culmination of the students’ experiences from the course. The theme demonstrates their eagerness to learn from the past. Besides discussing their works, they also acted on present developments -- challenging the status quo to envision a brighter future. The result: innovative projects that run the gamut from party games to healthcare solutions.


POST: A system that updates the elderly on their grandchildren

POST is another innovative project that allows one to update the elderly on their grandchildren by sending media posts in the form of physical photographs via a cloud system.

“The idea of POST was inspired by a video about an old lady waiting for the postman every day, hoping to receive letters from her children. I wanted to recreate the anticipation of the wait and joy when one receives a letter in their mailbox,” said Yasmine Cheng, mastermind of the project.


The NUS Division of Industrial Design’s 20th Anniversary’s graduation show website

Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the traditional graduation exhibition was held virtually on 10 July for the first time in 20 years.

“To be frank, I think we’re quite lucky to be graduating in 2020. A lot can be said about this year but we cannot deny that this is a year of change, a year where new opportunities present itself and where we are forced to innovate and push boundaries as we settle into the new normal. And in that sense, I think our theme for this year’s show is pretty apt,” said Shawn Ng who helmed the show’s Design and Content team.

Shawn’s project “Caregiving 101” is a system using existing caregiving support services to facilitate the safe sharing of relatable stories between caregivers. Besides providing solutions, it also creates awareness of available support channels.


Caregiving101: Caring through safe distancing

What’s being done at DID

DID has come a long way since its establishment in 1999 as the first university-level industrial design programme hosted within the Department of Architecture, School of Design and Environment. Since then, it has flourished into an award-winning course through the works of its students and staff.

“Since the establishment of the DID programme 20 years ago, the DID team has been continuously refining its programme and collaborating with companies from various sectors through workshops and studio platforms. I would like to thank all the brilliant actors that have contributed to the development of this pedagogy, including all our DID’s lecturers and all our graduates who have built and elevated the reputation of our division through their professional achievements,” shared Associate Professor Christian Boucharenc, Head of the NUS Division of Industrial Design.

For more details of the projects, please visit the website or download the NUS DID 20 years anniversary book.


By the NUS Division of Industrial Design