And what better subject matter to give budding designers a taste of a live client brief, than CoLab. CoLab is the outcome of Pearson Lloyd’s intensive project with Senator, exploring emerging higher-education models and informed by behavioural insights at the University.
As part of their professional practice module, students studying for a degree in Furniture and Product Design, were invited to consider the thinking behind CoLab’s ‘café classroom’ concept. This intelligent solution is a response to the need for both formal learning and informal peer-to-peer collaboration, without the need to reconfigure a space.
By creating dynamic learning environments – creative hubs, quiet nooks, social labs and team touchdowns – CoLab expands the classroom beyond the conventional siloed four walls, to encourage students and teachers to engage in open discussion, that would usually only take place in the café, atrium or corridor.
The assignment challenged students to build on the existing range, suggesting enhancements which stayed true to both the original design ethos, and its use of sustainable materials. They were asked to consider intelligent use of space, muti-posture design, and access to power. All suggestions needed to be suitable for high traffic environments and have excellent environmental credentials.
The Groups presented their design concepts to Tom Lloyd, co-founder of design studio PearsonLLoyd, The Senator Group’s James Knight, as well as University Course Leaders. In true creative style, the presentations were a mix of vision boards, 3D models and prototypes, to bring their ideas to life.
Tom Lloyd and Luke Pearson have been long standing supporters of NUT and were both awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Design in 2022.
The trio plan to work on further projects to lead the way in furniture designed for the education.