Product Development Project

Product Development Project (PdP) is a five-period-long course that invites Master’s students from all backgrounds, but mainly engineering, industrial design, and business, to tackle challenges of collaborating companies. The teams form in September and deliver a functioning prototype in the final Gala in May.
Aalto University / picture: Unto Rautio

Studying is based on problem based learning (PBL). Most of the problems are given by manufacturing companies who are searching for innovative cooperation with the next generation of product developers. At the beginning, much attention is directed to the forming of highly motivated interdisciplinary teams. A project typically includes phases of planning, searching for information, creation of concepts, decision making and detailed computer aided development. The project phases of manufacture, assembly, and testing are strongly related to the most valuable learning experiences.

In addition to the functional prototype the companies are delivered a final report as well as any other material that has been agreed upon with the team.

PdP course takes place in Aalto Design Factory (ADF), which is an experimental co-creation platform of Aalto University. ADF as an operational environment is twofold. One is the material side consisting of team working spaces, machine & electro shops, prototyping & testing facilities, software tools et cetera. The second is its immaterial form which is composed of low bureaucracy, low hierarchy, interaction, development methods and workshops that support co-creation and planned coincidences.

Prof. Kalevi Ekman, [email protected]

Project duration:
8,5 months (September – May), 10-15 ECTS

Number of students per project:

Project fee for a company:
15 000€

Application period for companies:
By the end of August

Product Development Project website >

About Student Business Projects

In Student Business Projects students work on real-life cases in collaboration with companies and other organizations. With a know-how gained during the studies, supported by teacher supervision and guidance, student groups take on challenges varying from market research and strategic planning to product design and development.

For companies, the projects offer a way to connect with the experts of the future and get fresh ideas and new insights. Aalto University students have a way of challenging conventional ideas and coming up with new, innovative ways of doing things.

Student Business Projects also provide a chance to get in touch with potential future employees, as well as gain visibility among the soon-to-be graduates from the fields of science, art, technology and business.

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