It is difficult to imagine developing innovative and sustainable products today without competent industrial design. One of the factors that determines the quality of products, their marketability, and therefore the profile of companies and brands is industrial design. The Association of German Industrial Designers (VDID) and the Association of German Engineers (VDI) have created a handbook to help practitioners understand such interrelationships. The guidelines are intended for all those who are organizationally and operationally involved in the product creation process, particularly engineers, industrial designers, and product managers.
Over a period of about eight years, about twenty industrial designers and engineers completely revised the VDI/VDID Guideline 2424. It officially defines the “state of the art” after pre-publication and extensive discussion in expert circles. Beuth Verlag publishes it in two languages (German and English). The guidelines describe aspects of a systematic product development process that includes strategy, planning, concept, design, and elaboration and is newly coordinated among the actors in each development. According to the information, the following aspects of innovative and market-oriented product design are considered: (1) Product design is centred on the human/user. (2) Industrial design is an important component of corporate and brand strategy. (3) The objectives, activities, and methods of industrial design are an essential part of the product development process. Furthermore, the fee-based guideline defines key terms from design and development and explains practise tasks. “What requirements should a model meet?” for example. How do you ensure product safety as well as worker health and safety? What is the structure of property rights? The guideline is supplemented by checklists and examples for implementation in practice. Andreas Schmieg, head of the committee, explained: “The 2424 will significantly facilitate and thus improve the cooperation between designers and engineers. The goal is good, marketable products for people”.
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