Design factory industry stakeholders gathered at launch event

Problem-solving for industry

Unlock Fresh Thinking for your Big Problems

The Design Factory New Zealand is a co-creation space where students and industry partners work together to solve complex problems. 

Students from across Wintec’s Centres learn and apply a diverse range of problem solving skills, with a committed focus on their industry partner’s problem. Students seek to deeply engage with the problem, empathise with industry and customers to gain their perspective on the issue, create a range of possible solutions, and test prototypes for best-fit solutions.

You can use this opportunity to solve specific and existing needs of your company beyond normal business resources, or utilise fresh thinking to approach complex and wider issues. Involvement with the Design Factory will provide you with critical strategic insight, moving you to the forefront of industry and gaining you greater competitive advantage.

The result?

A deep and wide understanding of your problem, with tested solutions for further implementation - as well as your involvement with an engaged group of students, training them for effective problem solving as leaders of tomorrow.

Any IP created will be owned by the industry partner - and we invite them to participate as much as possible in the co-creation process.

To find out more, please contact us using the button below.


Here are some of the industry problems we’ve recently worked on:

  • Opus International Consultants challenged the students to come up with low-cost solutions to enable the remote monitoring of water supply networks. Paul says the experience was rewarding for the students, who put forward many smart solutions.
  • Waikato DHB wanted to look at new ways to create interconnectedness online with patients through technologies like SmartHealth.
  • Midland Trauma Systems explore different ways to reduce quad bike incidents on farms.

Hear what industry has to say about working with the design factory

Frequently asked questions

What will be required of me during the length of the project?

To be passionate and committed to the project. We will require you to spend time at key points in the project to co-create and give feedback to students.

I have a problem or project in mind, but I’m not sure if it’s big enough…?

We anticipate that a project will take a team one semester or a year to complete, during which they will articulate ideas, prototype, user-test and deliver a proof of concept solution to you.

What type of project is suitable?

We want you to talk to us about your ideas and discuss the possibilities. We are after ‘wicked’ problems that are future-focused, complex and are opportunities for innovation. We are happy to spend time to work on a problem statement together that all parties are happy with.