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Learning from others, developing for others

Eric Weber wants to create innovative and sustainable products. The industrial design student gets his ideas at Toni and from discussing his interests and concerns with fellow students.

Tessa Apitz: Why are you studying industrial design?
Eric Weber: I did an apprenticeship in design engineering, which was very technical. My design work focuses on people. Industrial design makes a lot of things possible in that respect and provides a broad outlook.

Is your programme living up to your expectations?
I was surprised how applied and practical it is. And I underestimated how important exchanging ideas and interests with peers is. It is less about which courses I attend and more about who my fellow students are.

Practical, in what way?
Our “New Mobility” module, for instance, explores the future of public transport. I co-designed an e-scooter for rural areas poorly served by public transport. In another project, we developed visions for tools whose digital extensions create value for craftspeople and skilled traders. Henrik Lebender and I designed a scanner and a corresponding app for the digital tracking of logs. Scanning the cut edge after felling enables assigning tree trunks an individual ID. The annual rings are forgery-proof, a tree’s unique fingerprint. The project is called “” We gave the project the name “” and under the following link you can find our final presentation.

What would you change at ZHdK?
It could be more interdisciplinary; for example, we’ve never worked with dancers, although that would be exciting. Stronger networking with other universities would also be great: a joint module with biology or medical students would help us industrial designers a lot.

What are your wishes for the future?
I want to create something that I can fully support. Later, I’d like to pass on my knowledge and teach. In general, I’d like design to be valued more — it can make such a huge difference.

What energizes you most?
Riding my mountain bike in the forest boosts my energy.

Further student portraits published in Zett

[Translate to English:] Eric Weber develops smart solutions for craft businesses. Photo: Regula Bearth © ZHdK
[Translate to English:] Eric Weber develops smart solutions for craft businesses. Photo: Regula Bearth © ZHdK