Nordcode 2019 seminar

1st IDBM Creative Research Symposium


27-29 November 2019
Aalto University @ Espoo, Finland

by International Design Business Management (IDBM) programme
In collaboration with Aalto University Experience Platform



Participation is free of charge.

Organising Team

  • Toni-Matti Karjalainen, Aalto University BIZ & Nordcode
  • Miikka J. Lehtonen, Dubai Institute of Design and innovation
  • Peter McGrory, Aalto University ARTS
  • Patrick Rinke, Aalto University SCI
  • Kirsi Manninen, Aalto University ARTS
  • Anders Warell, Lund University & Nordcode
  • Mads Nygaard Folkmann, University of Southern Denmark & Nordcode
  • Martina Keitsch, NTNU Trondheim & Nordcode
  • Monika Hestad, Brand Valley / Oslo School of Architecture and Design

Target Groups

  • Scholars and doctoral students from diverse fields: design, design management, cultural studies, marketing, media and communication at the core, but not exclusively
  • Practitioners from creative and cultural industries
  • Graduate students

Casting Call (CFP)

The seminar will include paper presentations by scholars and PhD students, keynotes from academia and industry, student demos, and various entertainment sequences in an informal and relaxed Nordcode and IDBM spirit. To create the backbone of the seminar, we welcome and encourage scholars, doctoral students, practitioners, and others from the fields of design studies, design management, design history and cultural studies interaction design, media studies, marketing, communication studies, music, theatre, film and tv studies, and related fields to submit extended abstracts to this creative seminar! The selected abstracts will be developed into working papers.

Important Dates:

  • Extended abstract DL: 31 August 2019
  • Notification of acceptance: 15 September 2019
  • Working paper DL: 31 October 2019

The purpose of Nordcode seminars is to stimulate scholarly discussion on design and act as a platform to support the design research community by encouraging established and, in particular, emerging researchers in the field to present their ideas and studies for a friendly scholar and practitioner community.

Due to the open-ended nature of Nordcode, we do not have any strict questions to guide potential papers. Alongside with design research and design management topics, including the “traditional” Nordcode sphere of communicative design, the special focus of the seminar will be on the wide spectrum of creative and cultural industries, entertainment business, performance and experience design. We would like to explore a multifaceted array of viewpoints into designing and managing the meaningful experience in a cross-disciplinary setting, also taking the new digital and social platforms into account, reflecting the required future design profiles and competences for future. The seminar will function as a platform for creative openings and surprising ideas. “Performance” and “Stage” in the seminar title are not only referring to the activity and material space where the experiences occur, but also work as metaphors for the different contexts of designing experiences and constructing a meaningful context supporting them – business, technology, design.

Papers may present theoretical or empirical research contributions, conceptual studies, work-in-progress reports, or initial ideas, as we believe in the value of discussion and co-development of early proposals. Creative try-outs and brave openings are especially encouraged as well as more practically oriented case studies on aforementioned fields. Moreover, we are looking for compelling stories that showcase what academics can learn from practitioners, and how we can extend the cross-disciplinary ethos of Nordcode to cover both academics and practitioners.

Extended abstract: Abstracts of should include the name(s), affiliation and email of the author(s) and description (up to 1000 words) of the intended working paper with background, approach and tentative results included. The Nordcode/IDBM reviewers will provide brief feedback on submitted abstracts with comments and advice for alterations. If the abstract gets accepted, the working paper will also be accepted, as long as it is in line with the abstract, is properly completed and meets sufficient quality standards.

Submit your abstract to 

Working paper: Accepted abstracts will be invited to be submitted as working papers of up to 3000 words in length (including references), and we strongly recommend using the APA referencing style.

Post-seminar publication: On the basis of the submissions, we will explore the possibility of producing a high-quality edited and illustrated book with selected authors, possibly published by AALTO ARTS Books in 2020.

The Script

Nordcode ( is a researcher network established in 2000. The network organises seminars and meetings on design-related research, particularly concerning the communicative aspects of design. Nordcode seminars provide scholars, PhD and master students as well as practitioners an informal and easy access platform to present both initial and completed research projects and to test creative ideas in an informal and supportive context. Already 17 annual seminars and various other events and activities have occurred since 2003, the topics covering a wide array of design and design-related fields. The seminar has been circulating in various cities and universities in Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway. Typically, the events have been kept rather intimate, gathering 30-60 people, mainly from the Nordic countries but also beyond. The former University of Art and Design in Helsinki and Helsinki University of Technology hosted the 2nd and 6th seminars in 2003 and 2007, and the 11th seminar was organised by the IDBM programme in 2012.

International Design Business Management ( is an interdisciplinary graduate programme at Aalto University. Since 1995, IDBM has delivered world-class multidisciplinary and systemic education in global business development through design and technology. A core aspect of the program is the strong element of diversity, as students represent multiple nationalities and disciplinary backgrounds, as well as have varying degrees of prior work experience.

The 18th Nordcode seminar will return to Finland and Aalto University, located in the brand new buildings of the School of Business and School of Arts, Architecture and Design in the Otaniemi Campus in the city of Espoo. IDBM Programme will host the events, providing the seminar with a highly cross-disciplinary and creative nature, intertwining research and practice. The event will also celebrate the new campus of the Aalto University, and the brand new buildings hosting the School of Business and the School of Arts, Design and Architecture.

Cost & Registration

The seminar is free of charge
Registration will open by September 2019

More information

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