UTDesignLabDesignLab communityDesignLab Research Fellows

DesignLab Research Fellows

The DesignLab Research Fellowship consists of researchers based at various faculties of the University of Twente, that value creativity and transdisciplinarity. They share DesignLab’s vision and want to use it as a platform for researching, teaching and learning. Together, the DesignLab Research Fellows work towards exploring, understanding or solving societal challenges - often within the context of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.


The seed fund was established in 2021 with an aim of supporting DesignLab Research Fellows in the development of new research ideas and initiatives. Projects that come into consideration encompass all kind of ideas and initiatives that have a link with the focus areas of DesignLab: Responsible Design, Citizen Science, Transdisciplinary Working and Responsible Futuring, to create societal impact. The thread running across all nine funded projects was the ability to translate ideas into activities, studies or proposals that work towards exploring and connecting science, technology with societal challenges.

Learn more about these innovative projects, the DesignLab research fellows and their collaborators below:

Privilegisation And Urban Digital Infrastructures

In critically thinking about the responsible design of urban digital infrastructures (UDIs), we frequently debate how such infrastructures perpetuate or increase existing social inequalities and further social, economic or political marginalisation. Highlighting and countering marginalisation is exceptionally important. However, focussing only on marginalization processes may miss a linked, yet distinct, set of processes that Dr. F. Meissner and her colleagues at ITC refer to as privilegisation.

Research Fellow Biography

Dr. F. Meissner’s main research interest is focused on contemporary urban social configurations and how - in times of datafication - these are transformed through international migration. She is an Assistant Professor in Critical Geodata Studies and Geodata Ethics at the University of Twente.

Enable Children

Funda Atun's project addresses the following research questions: "What constitutes children's capacities for facing climate-change-related disasters in developing island states?" and "How can we harness children's capacities by adopting 'child researchers' and 'child to child peer research’ methodologies in disaster risk and climate change adaptation studies?"

Research Fellow Biography

Dr. Funda Atun is an urban planner with a track record in the field of societal resilience, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. She is currently an Assistant professor of strategic planning at ITC.

Designing Personal Health Data Experiences

Armağan Karahanoğlu aims to interrogate the underexplored roles of design in personal digital health data communication. The knowledge obtained from this will pave the way for future research into data literacy.

Research Fellow Biography

Armağan Karahanoğlu is a design researcher who works on the human-centered experience design of personal health technologies. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor at the University of Twente, Interaction Design Research Group. She is passionate about research and design of human-centred technology experiences and has an Industrial Design academic background.


Femke Nijboer and Jeroen Ottink are developing a theatrical workshop in the language Low Saxon (Nedersaksisch/Twents/Sallands/plat) that can connect Citizen Lab to Noabers (stakeholders in the region).

Research Fellow & Collaborator Biography

Femke Nijboer is an assistant professor in the Biomedical Signals and Systems (BSS) group at the University of Twente (Enschede, the Netherlands). Jeroen Ottink is the Project leader of the Pilot, “Loneliness” by Topfit Citizen Lab. He is also an actor.

 Design Your Life

The aim of this project is to initiate a pilot study into the design and implementation of an online community in which autistic young adults (AYAs) can discuss and disseminate self-designed ‘life-hacks’. This online community will become an integral part of Design Your Life, a toolkit through which AYAs can design their own assistive technologies.

Research Fellow & Collaborators Biography

The core members of Design Your Life are: Jelle van Dijk, assistant professor University of Twente, Maurice Magnée, Lector HAN University of Applied Sciences, Koen Dortmans, senior researcher HAN University of Applied Sciences, Niels van Huizen, PhD student University of Twente, Thijs Waardenburg, PhD student HAN University of Applied Sciences / University of Twente.


This project aims to identify the challenges and needs students face in transdisciplinary group collaboration and data sharing.

Research fellow Biography

Dr. J.A Martinez is an Associate Professor at the ITC, University of Twente.

BRIDE Interface

The BRIDE Research Group are creating an interface to allow researchers and the public to interact with data from the MX3D bridge installed in Amsterdam, NL. As a test of the platform, they plan to host a hack-a-thon using the new interface

Research Fellow & Collaborators' Biography

The BRIDE Research group consists of Dr. M. Nagenborg, a Philosopher of Technology, who works on the interplay between Cities, Technologies, and Human self-understanding, Sage Cammers-Goodwin, who is a PHD Candidate at the University of Twente, and Ilse Schieven, who is pursuing a Master's degree in Computer Science.

Good Robots For The Future Of Work

Dr. ir. Cristina Zaga's project systematically researches enablers and barriers that engineers and other scientists face to responsibly co-design human-robot partnerships in the smart industry and provide transdisciplinary guidelines.

Research Fellow Biography

Dr. ir. Cristina Zaga is an assistant professor at Human-Centred Design Group (Design and Production Management department) and a researcher at the DesignLab, University of Twente.

Utrasonic Therapeutic Film

Dr. David Fernandez Rivas and Pericas Canyelles are developing a novel bandage for therapeutic wound care use. With this Design Lab Fellowship, they want to involve the citizens (patients, relatives, clinicians) that will benefit from this technological development at the earliest step possible in their work. 

Research Fellow Biography

Dr. David Fernandez Rivas is a professor whose research focus is on BioEngineering and Greentech. He enjoys scientific research and ensuring its deployment into society on three topics: cavitation, renewable energy, and process intensification through microfluidics. Pericas Canyelles works at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science.

Do you want to join us in co-shaping the future we want to live in, and are you curious about the possibilities DesignLab Research Fellowship offers you? If so, please feel free to contact:

drs. M. de Boer (Michelle)
Project Manager Technology & Society
M. Iliohan (Miriam)
Co-founder and Manager DesignLab