Friedemann Schaber


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Friedemann Schaber is a Senior Lecturer in Product Design, Faculty of Arts, Science and Technology. PhD Vehicle Design research at the Royal College of Art and scholarship at Kyoto Institute of Technology on design applications of collagenic fibres and bio composites. He has worked as an industrial designer in Europe and the Far East, which has led him to explore national differences in the use of materials, design education, government promotion and brand marketing. With his students and colleagues, he investigates the understanding of design in different societies; how it is taught, how ideas, visual and technical information are transferred among locations and markets.

Knowledge transfer activities include KTPs, conceptual models, prototyping systems for industrial and transportation design, and the introduction of live client projects into the design curriculum. Schaber is lead academic for a KTP in health innovation and has initiated several live projects in which undergraduate Design students work within the community, including projects with the Sorrell Foundation.

Research Interests

Friedemann’s current research is concerned with particular mechanisms of knowledge transfer in relation to design management. Over a ten-year period, he and his colleagues have analysed the strengths and pitfalls of Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) in the context of the global toy, games and gift markets. This decade-long project culminated in an academic book on design and technology management entitled Handbook of Research on Trends in Product Design and Development, and more than £840,000 income for the University of Northampton.

He also recently collaborated with the Sorrell Foundation and colleagues at the University of Derby as programme coordinator for two pilot projects with academies. This project subsequently led to the rebuild and regeneration of regional school campuses, and contributed to government policy on education through its ‘Building Schools for the Future’ programme.

Further, a recent project with stakeholders in India enabled the University Design programme team to foster appropriate design solutions for international communities.

His other research interests include design management, design pedagogy, and material innovation.

Teaching Interests

​As Senior Lecturer in Product Design, I encourage students to challenge the dynamic of functionality, desirability, the aesthetic, materials, sustainability, social contexts and ethics. These sensibilities have developed over the past decade, in part through my research and analysis of the relationship between Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) and design management – which has influenced my teaching methodologies.

These student design and community projects invigorate young people’s engagement with important areas of community life, and are built into the Design curriculum. Live projects in which undergraduate Design students work within the community include:

  • 78 Derngate, which involved working with a preservation trust
  • The Northampton Racecourse, working with a community grass-roots group on the local environment
  • Delapre Abbey, in which students worked with a heritage community group on the design of a visitor centre
  • The Sorrell Foundation’s Young Design Programme, a national partnership with local schools, in which university students work for pupils to develop design solutions in the school environment


  • NC Drawing Design Illustration

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Friedemann Schaber is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 3 Similar Profiles
knowledge transfer Social Sciences
toy Social Sciences
gift Social Sciences
academy Social Sciences
learning Social Sciences
Leather Engineering & Materials Science
student Social Sciences
Product design Engineering & Materials Science

Research Output 1999 2019

Britishness: Heritage, Tradition and Authenticity

Lloyd, C. & Schaber, F., 10 Jul 2019, Fashion Communication in the Digital Age: FACTUM 19 Fashion Communication Conference, Ascona, Switzerland, July 21-26, 2019. Kalbaska, N., Sádaba, T., Cominelli, F. & Cantoni, L. (eds.). Factum2019 ed. Zurich: Springer International

Research output: Contribution to Book/Report typesConference contributionResearchpeer-review

cultural heritage

Material consciousness: Perception, Performance and Properties of Leather

Schaber, F., 2016.

Research output: Contribution to conference typesPosterResearch


India matters: leather from production to co-design

Schaber, F., Sugiyama, K. (ed.), Kobayashi, A. (ed.), Takatera, M. (ed.), Zhang, J. (ed.), Shiraishi, M. (ed.) & Kobayashi, N. (ed.), 1 Aug 2013, Consilience and Innovation in Design. Tokyo: International Association of Societies of Design Research, p. 5733-5740 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to Book/Report typesChapterResearchpeer-review

Open Access

Undergraduate design learning in multiple partnerships: Joinedupdesign for academies

Butcher, J. & Schaber, F., Aug 2013, In : International Journal of Technology and Design Education. 23, 3, p. 567-579 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review



JASSO Scholarship

Friedemann Schaber (Recipient), 17 Nov 2017

Prize: Other distinction

institute of technology

Activities 2011 2019

  • 3 Oral presentation
  • 2 Symposium
  • 2 Exhibition
  • 1 Invited talk

Royal College of Art

Friedemann Schaber (Visiting researcher)
25 Jan 201929 Jan 2019

Activity: Public Engagement and OutreachExhibitionResearch

Royal College of Art

Friedemann Schaber (Visiting researcher)
Jan 2018

Activity: Public Engagement and OutreachExhibitionResearch

Advanced Textiles for Health and Wellbeing Symposium. Royal College of Art. London

Friedemann Schaber (Speaker)
3 May 20184 May 2018

Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsSymposiumResearch

Innovating for Sustainable Development

Friedemann Schaber (Speaker), Ashley Brooks (Speaker), Maeve McLoughlin (Speaker)
16 Mar 2017

Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsOral presentationResearch

Press / Media