From climate change to creating a more inclusive society, Elisava’s new postgraduate courses aim to stir change

Along with the announcement of Masters Beyond – a roster of inspiring programmes focusing on design – the institution has launched an open call for the Elisava Masters Beyond Scholarships, covering 50 per cent of the full tuition.

16 March 2022

The world is currently facing a few challenges to say the least, from the climate emergency, the pandemic to the war in Ukraine. Never before has design innovation and community been more vital, especially when it comes to creating a more equal, diverse and inclusive society.

This is something that Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering, is working to address through its series of programmes and postgraduate courses. Focusing on engineering and design, Elisava is an institution with 60 years’ worth of experience under its belt, where more than 20,000 students from all over the globe have studied. Its inspiring roster of degrees, programmes and courses are aimed at professionals who want to redefine their career path and discover new ways of thinking – the “curious and non-conformist people”, writes Elisava on its website, “who are willing to use design to change society”.

All of which are housed under a new set of postgraduate courses named Masters Beyond. Featuring various disciplines, the courses offer postgraduate students the chance to widen their knowledge and make impactful change through their work – all in all, taking action and facing the challenges of today. The programmes are wide-spanning and each address the issues currently prevailing across the globe, including courses that give designers the tools needed to create a greener, more sustainable, inclusive and better future. This includes the Master Beyond Product(s): a course that reevaluates raw materials, processes and technologies conceived in response to the social, economic and environmental hurdles of today. By looking at these key elements, those enlisted on the programme will reflect on the ways in which we use products, what products we use, how we use them and why.


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: From the ashes, Benedikt Dietz (Master in Design through New Materials) (Copyright © Benedikt Dietz)

Another course is the Master Beyond Packaging. “Packaging is to products what oxygen is to humans; it’s everywhere, for better or for worse,” writes Elisava on the site. “Therefore, we need to rethink how it should be according to the planet’s challenges. We need to understand our mistakes to mend the damage. We need to review if packaging is necessary.” In short, the world’s inhabitants need to consume less and become more conscious about their purchases. Packaging plays a key role in this and, through this specific Elisava programme, designers are given the opportunity to think up a more sustainable and logical solution.

Master Beyond Branding, on the other hand, is a course that looks at branding and how it has evolved over time, specifically in an increasingly connected world. Meanwhile, the Master in Design through New Materials course does what it says on the tin; it’s a programme dedicated to new materials with a particular focus on sustainability, wellbeing, creativity and design innovation. The course looks at how to reduce waste, improve durability and develop the best medium for objects in the future. Master in Data Design is a more hands-on course that looks at data and how the world can build more honest information – a prevalent topic considering the age of flat-earth conspiracists and influx of fake news.


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Chandelier, Guillermo Santomà (Master Beyond Product(s)) (Copyright © Guillermo Santomà)

Another course titled Master in Design for Resilience poses the question of how design can improve people’s lives from a “resilience-based approach”, states Elisava. From inclusivity to adapting and accepting uncertainty, students enrolled on this course will learn how to implement positive change through design. The final two programmes are Master in Design for Emergent Futures – which looks at design interventions in products and platforms – and Master in Human Interaction and Artificial Intelligence, centred around the rise of AI and how it makes our lives easier.

Elisava is providing the tools needed to inspire and encourage change in the design and engineering industries – and then ultimately the world. “Through interdisciplinary, transversality, new formats, project-based research and careful observation of what’s going on at this moment with society, we explore a multifaceted way of thinking,” says Elisava in an announcement. This is explored through its multitude of disciplines and masters, which break down the binaries of disciplines and place the institution in uncharted territories. “The future is being created now – we are the ones doing it, so let’s do it fairly.”

Coinciding with the launch of its masters programme is the Elisava Masters Beyond Scholarships, a chance for students to enrol on one of the Masters Beyond courses and commence education in September 2022. The scholarships cover 50 per cent of the tuition fees for each master mentioned above, with the full amount totalling €12,500. The applications are now open and the deadline is Wednesday 23 March, with the winners announced on 5 April on the website and social media channels. Head here to apply.


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Master Beyond Branding (Copyright © Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering)


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Prólogo, Raquel Quevedo (Master Beyond Product(s)) (Copyright © Raquel Quevedo)


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Lolo and Sosaku (Master Beyond Product(s)) (Copyright © Lolo and Sosaku)


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Mall fruit bowl, Curro Claret (Master Beyond Packaging) (Copyright © Curro Claret)


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: 730 hours of violence, Domestic Data Streamers (Master in Data Design) (Copyright © Domestic Data Streamers)


Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Workshop Remix El Barrio – Biomaterials, with Anastasia Pistofidou (Master in Design for Emergent Futures) (Master in Data Design) (Copyright © Anastasia Pistofidou)

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Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering

Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering, is an institution with 60 years of experience sharing knowledge to design and transform the world. The school develops projects to generate and transfer knowledge, address present and future challenges and foster change.

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Elisava, Barcelona School of Design and Engineering: Speculative project of mixing craft and technology, Cristina Noguer for PUIG (Master Beyond Packaging) (Copyright © Cristina Noguer)

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