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Accelerated Innovation, Technology, and Biomaterials: Denmark

Study Design Approaches in Copenhagen in Partnership with the Royal Danish Academy

Working with globally recognized faculty from the Royal Danish Academy’s Architecture and Technology Institute, participants will study sustainability and design, looking closely at the use of cutting-edge Danish “biomaterials” in addressing the world’s most pressing environmental challenges.

Using a wicked problems methodology, students from multiple disciplines and backgrounds will work in teams on real-world challenges. The experience will include site visits to Denmark’s foremost companies active in the emergent biomaterials sector. Participants will be exposed to accelerated design and considerate design approaches.

Eligible Participants

  • All University of Washington graduate-level students and alumni are welcome to apply for this program.
  • This program is designed to be interdisciplinary and accessible to all. No technical background is needed to participate.


Accelerated Innovation, Technology, and Biomaterials at the Royal Danish Academy

  • Program Elements:  UW Graduate course combining in-class instruction and company visits.
  • Location: Copenhagen and Kalundborg campus, plus site/company visits around Denmark.
  • In development. 

Program Description

University of Washington student participants will have the opportunity to learn alongside expert faculty from the Royal Danish Academy in a program created exclusively for the University of Washington Global Innovation Exchange.

Program Objectives

  • Understand the possibilities of biomaterials in the design of built environments.
  • Understand commercial logics and innovation practices that allow radical sustainable solution to reach the market.
  • Understand how local biological resources have a positive impact towards more sustainable construction and design chains.
  • Understand methods of considerate innovation and accelerated design to bring ideas to fruition.

Course Overview

  • Danish biomaterials, past present and future.
  • Introduction to accelerated design and considerate design approaches
  • Introduction to the multidisciplinary roles and capabilities of taking sustainable ideas to mainstream market in a multistakeholder environment
  • Introduction to carbon footprint assessment software and the Carbon Pyramid
  • Wicked problems methodology and the management of systemic innovation dynamics

Program Schedule Overview

Week 1:

  • Visits to key sites and industry/studios dealing with sustainable material development.
  • Excursion to historical uses natural material in construction, from hay to seaweed.
  • Visit and lectures at Centre for Information technology and Architecture “CITA” at the Royal Danish Academy.

Week 2:

  • Lecture and presentation of design methodologies from Master course Architecture and Extreme Environments.
  • 2 day workshop in problem solving oriented design, group work: from challenge to hypothesis.


With support from the Scan Design Foundation

Full or partial scholarships may be made available to participants through the Global Tech Experiences scholarship application process.

More information to come.

Program Logistics

For UW Students, enrollment in a University of Washington Global Innovation Exchange graduate course is required for participation. UW Alumni can contact us for other arrangements.

Included in the course fees:

  • Instruction Costs
  • Accommodation (all participants must stay in designated housing in Copenhagen)
  • Some meals (TBD)
  • Administrative Fees
  • UW Study Tour enrollment fees

Not included in the above fees (participant responsibility):

  • Travel to Copenhagen (flights)
  • UW mandatory travel insurance (approximately $2/day)
  • Other meals and incidentals not covered above

Questions? Contact Us!