Redefining innovation at the intersection of technology, culture and human perception.

Founded in 2007, the EPFL+ECAL Lab is the design research centre of the EPFL, located in the building of ECAL/University of Art and Design Lausanne. It combines academic research, artistic creativity and cultural understanding to positively influence the human perception of new technologies. With a transdisciplinary team of designers, engineers and psychologists, it has developed a fully integrated methodology to move beyond a tech-driven world; it explores contexts and terrains, creates disruptive solutions, builds prototypes and ultimately evaluates their emotional and cognitive impact on people.

The EPFL+ECAL Lab’s 15 years of exploration, implemented projects and publications have shown how design research can unite academia, economy and citizens. For example, new inclusive design strategies are able to serve larger audiences, bringing young and old, novices and experts together. It increases impact, enhances dialogue, drives behavioural change and provides benefits to a range of stakeholders.

This creative approach, combined with scientific methodologies, has addressed critical challenges and opened new perspectives in fields including health, media, trust and security, heritage and museology, immersive technologies, food and sustainability. Projects aim to produce working prototypes as well as knowledge about adoption factors to define disruptive, yet impactful and sustainable outcomes. This work is developed in collaboration with companies, public institutions, foundations and universities.

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