Medical Design From neurosurgical instruments to architecture 23 September 2020

For quite a while now, the focus in the medical sector has gone beyond simply optimising surgical instruments, for example, or designing new testing equipment. Innovation is seemingly no longer conceivable without the user as the central starting point. Furthermore, it is no longer just about healing the sick by means of medication and operations, as aspects such as interior design and the entire user experience during a hospital stay also play a vital role in terms of healthcare design. The aim is not only to restore health, but also to promote the ongoing preservation of health – both mental and physical. 

We will therefore be talking to Olaf Barski, Dr Nicole Busch and Jonas Rehn-Groenendijk about design and research projects in the field of health and care and the possibilities that have been opened up by an expanded perspective on the issue of healthcare in recent years. 

When: Wednesday, 23 September 2020
Start: 18:30
Location: Library of the German Design Council, Messe Frankfurt, Hall 9.3 (access only by prior appointment)

Olaf Barski

»Smart usability, precise functionality, outstanding reliability and safety are the focus of design for intelligent, system-based solutions in medical technology – good medical design can save lives.«


Olaf Barski grew up in Hamburg and studied at the University of Fine Arts Hamburg from 1979 to 1986, completing his studies with a degree in industrial design under Professor Peter Raacke in 1986. In 1991 he founded his own firm in Frankfurt am Main, which has traded as Barski Design GmbH since 2010. Today, Barski Design is a multiple-award-winning design firm specialising in product design, packaging, research and user experience, developing sophisticated design solutions in fields such as medical technology, personal care, consumer electronics, consumer kitchen and bathroom goods, lighting, mobility and transport. Its clients include renowned businesses such as B. Braun Melsungen, Bosch Home, Deutsche Bahn, Deutsche Telekom, Dräger Medical, Henkel, Melitta, Riese & Müller, Tesa and WMF Group. By intelligently linking user-oriented, market-based and technological requirements with many years of experience in different industries, the firm continually creates smart, innovative and surprising design solutions. 

Dr Nicole Busch

»As a freelancer, at Miele, as a lecturer and as a biologist, the focus for me is on the user experience, including in the field of medicine.«


Dr Nicole Busch has been working for herself under the name buschwerk since 2006. Her work addresses topics such as user experience research and ergonomics in design. Furthermore, she has been at Miele since 2018 and assists with projects in the areas of smart home, forecast, insights and concepts. Before that, Dr Nicole Busch completed a doctorate degree in applied ergonomics and design at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands and Christian-Albrecht University of Kiel, Germany, between 2003 and 2006. Alongside her freelancing and her consulting work for Miele, she has also been teaching on the subject of user experience research at Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design since 2007. Prior to 2006, she held roles such as Innovation Manager at Trendbüro in Hamburg and Human Factors Specialist at IDEO in Munich, San Francisco, Palo Alto, Chicago, Boston and London. Dr Nicole Busch initially completed a traineeship in bank operations and subsequently obtained an advanced degree in biology before devoting herself to ergonomics and design.

Dr Jonas Rehn-Groenendijk

»The multifaceted potential of design and design research for promoting health is in many ways significantly underestimated.«


Dr Jonas Rehn-Groenendijk is a design researcher and industrial designer who also holds a doctorate. In his research, he principally looks at the connection between design, behaviour and experience. He attaches particular importance to the health-promoting effect of design as well as the influence of design on health-related behaviour. His methodical focus is on empirical design research and evidence-based design. In addition to his research work at the Institute of Design Research, he teaches on pro-health design and design methodology and freelances as a designer and design consultant. On his blog, he concerns himself with aspects of design research and pro-health design.

Funded by

This event is made possible by the support of the Hessian Ministry of Economy, Energy, Transport and Housing.

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