Meet Babak Nemat, who is in his first year of the Sustainable Product-Service System Innovation master’s program.
Who are you?
My name is Babak Nemat.
Where do you come from?
I come from Tehran in Iran.
Where did you do your bachelor degree?
I graduated as an Industrial Designer from Azad University, Tehran – Iran
Why did you choose MSPI and BTH?
There is a famous quote “a butterfly’s wings can cause the tornado”. Perhaps many of us perceived it as overrating and a few assumed it as a true fact, when MSPI courses puts that theory into practice and prove that each of us could be effective and helpful in keeping our earth’s resources safer, eliminate industries’ footprint, or reducing societies’ negative impact on its nature and highlight universal consequences cause by ignoring those principles, despite of our small scale in front of our planet.
From another standpoint, some concepts such as Design, Innovation, Sustainability, and Services are not distant from our ordinary lives; unlike they’re impartible of that and become fairly tangible during this course. Introducing the “Design Thinking” method into this year’s course is another example, as made it more similar to Product and Engineering design experiences from my perspective.
Moreover I have some friends among MSPI alumni, whom work currently as researchers in BTH and Lund universities and they all recommended this course to me and explained its possible advantages.
In the meantime, BTH is well known because of its close cooperation with industries as a pioneer in Sustainability in the world and Sweden has the highest rate in this matter across all countries, which both provide a special understanding together with the vast experience into the MSPI course provide by BTH.
How are you finding the MSPI experience and your time at BTH so far?
Delightful and Insightful indeed! as far as I notice, BTH is the only University in Sweden that tries to apply “Design Thinking” methods into MSPI course, inspired from Stanford University and its close relationship by manufacturers that gave me chance to having a real communication with some of them (Atlas Copco & ABB company) during the last projects. Things become more interesting while you surrounded by an international environment, students and staffs that spontaneously expand your social ties, beside of that friendly relationship between master- student and their supportive attribute, all in all captivated me truly.
What has been your favorite course so far, and why?
I can point out two of them, the “Value Innovation” and “KEE” (Knowledge Enable Engineering) courses, their contained academic topics, renew and in some parts re-build my former knowledge that I gained from industrial design. We had a lot discussions about; Needfinding, Value proposition, PLM, PDM processes, Social media, Design assessment, Data mining and many others attractive issues that completely change my perspective about product development and which gave me a better insight for making decisions and how to approach real projects by the knowledge obtained. Of course, we had extra activities beside of those lessons, mostly blending with fun.
Definitely my master Marco Bertoni who taught both courses had a critical role in keeping those topics attractive and interactive all the time. His positive attitude, clever suggestions and enthusiasm to teaching and listening to you simultaneously, persuaded me to follow the whole courses with more interest and I’m eagerly looking forward to have another class with him again.
MSPI features many projects and project courses, which project are you most proud of?
My project for “Wearable Technology” that was conducted during the Knowledge Enabled Engineering course. It was a group project and challenging indeed because there were no obvious boundaries, except from our experiences or knowledge.
Our group chose the sport Rugby as our main field of activity and figured out how we can decrease the concussion rate cause in this sport.
We needed to get familiar with using different sensors and other electronics stuff, computer programming, and 3D printing to accomplish our stated goals, but finally we had this opportunity to launch the concept, tested it in reality, and obtained valuable feedback to hopefully improve it for the future.
The key areas for the program are Sustainable development, Product-service systems and Innovation. How do you think engineers can benefit from mastering these perspectives?
Moving toward sustainable society contain vast challenges in global and local perspectives, and using this approach would be really helpful if we could find a rational way to implement its rules into different levels of industry. Especially at a primary stage, when many companies might be aware about possible advantages that Sustainability and PSS can provide for them, but at the end of the day there are many restriction to apply that knowledge. Hence, I think discovering new ideas, having deeper research and collaboration with manufacturers in order to make this implementation process logical, could resolve existing gaps between academic and industrial areas and promise future benefits for both sides.
Why is this essential for companies to take these views into consideration?
Today market pressures are increasing constantly, not only by former rivals, but also from new arriving companies that were not observed before. Companies must be flexible and adaptive to survive during the time when consumer expectations and public awareness about global warming and environmental issues are arising from the other side.
Meanwhile product-service systems provide a promising opportunity – base strategy by focusing on client’ needs unlike the other problem- solving strategies and mainly comes with less material solutions to satisfy consumers because of its connection with sustainability.
This is a stepwise development and can be applied exclusively for each company, and mainly relies on innovative ideas. Hence, by taking this action companies can hit several targets with one shot. Finally this process application needs plenty of time for ideation, development, testing and receiving feedback from main customers and time is a landmark through marketing competition; so “the sooner the better”.
What is the main challenge in this field in the future?
Nowadays acceleration of technology improvements has changed people’s life style and their consumption patterns. Accordingly so has their expectations from products and how company may offer its services to them. It’s predictable that present rate will increase even more in the future.
Perhaps more research will be needed to matching current insight with technology development rates, because virtual reality usage spread rapidly across society’s surface when major part of current PSS experiences depend on physical objective products.
What do you see as essential developments for society relating to this field in the future?
Perhaps, population control, decreasing natural resources degradation especially clean water as critical element for life, discovering proper substitute and effective ways for recycling. Since human society development mainly will follow by expanding people’s demands and the resources should meet those demands are not infinite.
Then for everyone who looking for a sustainable future, it’s essential to consider this knowledge as a serious matter beyond academic practice and enhancing their solidarity with this part more than before.
How would you like change the program for the better?
There are many scope exist regard to Product service-system innovation and our project’s focus were on sustainability and innovation so far, hence I’m willing to know more about service’s function and those elements that influence it’s result, directly or indirectly; such as marketing, advertisement, service design methods or bazar analyzing because creativity in this part will not be possible without having an enough recognition about those issues, and I hope MSPI course planning makes those concepts touchable for me through remaining time.
What would recommend to future students interested in these topics?
Human needfinding and Innovation are fundamental elements of MSPI course which means; you have to discovering untapped parts of human knowledge and its experiences, so obviously further than academic methods.
As a complement course I strongly recommend it for industrial-Product designer and any relative courses because of its potential to presenting new rooms for discussion, according to personage of each ones.
What would be your dream job after graduating from MSPI?
I had my own design company once, then it will be exciting to launch it again with a new perspective on product-service development as a designer or consultant. Moreover, I am always looking for opportunities to pursue my education at a higher level such as a PhD, as I found this procedure attractive and challenging indeed among Sweden’s universities.
What do you see yourself doing in 5 years from now?
It’s hard to predict right now, nonetheless my ultimate desire will be reinforcing my design experience by applying PSS knowledge and use them both in my future carrier, regardless to the place I’ll be in.