What are GDG’s goals?

Who can participate?

What can be submitted?

We use online and offline formats to show the many different forms that design takes at German universities and present them to a broad and professional audience. We use event formats to network graduates with representatives from culture, industry and research. We show a wide range of product design courses in Germany and network universities.

Bachelor, Master and Diploma graduates from the participating universities with a graduation date between 1 May 2020 and 30 June 2021 from the field of product and industrial design, as well as interface students with a connection to physical objects, can submit their theses.

Because design is evolving, we welcome projects in the field of classic product design, but explicitly also progressive work in design & research, UX- and service design, material design, social design, speculative design, …

A physical prototype should be available. If you are selected for the exhibition, this prototype will be displayed in the museum.

Which universities will participate?

When is the registration period?

Who selects the projects for the exhibition?

University of Applied Sciences Potsdam, University of the Arts Berlin, Saar Academy of Fine Arts, Kunsthochschule Kassel, Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design, Muthesius Academy of Fine Arts Kiel, Hochschule für Bildende Künste Hamburg, Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule Halle, Folkwang University of the Arts, Kunsthochschule Weissensee, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Hannover, HAWK Hildesheim, Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Berlin, Ostbayrische Technische Hochschule Regensburg, Hochschule für Gestaltung Offenbach and Bauhaus Universität Weimar. You can find an overview of the different orientations of the study programmes here.

15. May – 30. June 2021. The online registration form must be duly completed and sent in by 30. June 2021 23:59h at the latest.

The interdisciplinary jury of experts selects projects for the exhibition from all the projects uploaded in 2021. At least 3 final theses per university will be selected.

What are the selection criteria for the exhibition?


The work has social benefits, provides a solution to a problem, initiates and/or causes relevant changes.


The work looks attractive and neat; does not overshadow the functionality, shows a good balance between form and function.


The work has an innovative character, creates different or additional options, contributes to change processes. The decisive factor is the extent to which the design is innovative and/or makes a relevant contribution to society or the world of design.


The work comes from collaborations, makes connections and has added value through input from external parties.

Production method

The work has been produced responsibly, testifies to the professional use of materials and techniques, is sustainable and / or of high quality.

Where will the 2021 exhibition take place and what will be exhibited?

When will the exhibition, matchmaking and design talks take place?

What happens at the matchmaking event and what are the prizes?

The exhibition is planned to take place at the Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin in gallery and lecture rooms beyond the regular KGM exhibitions.

If you are selected to participate in the exhibition, a physical prototype must be available by then.

Due to Corona, the 2020 analog exhibition takes place together with the coming year 2021. The decision was made with a heavy heart, but we came to the conclusion that this is the only responsible solution. We hope for your understanding and will inform you about further news. 

The exhibition is planned for October 2021.

Due to the still unclear development of the COVID-19 crisis, all dates are subject to change.

At a matchmaking event during the exhibition opening, ambassadors from various fields select outstanding works for individual awards & support. This could be, for example, a green card for the presentation of the work at a trade fair or coaching with a well-known designer.

Do I have to be present at the matchmaking and exhibition?

Who do I turn to for questions?

How do I upload my project and how can I access the upload form?

To be selected for an award or support, personal participation in the matchmaking event is mandatory. The ambassadors would like to get to know the graduates personally and get into conversation.

If you have any questions, please contact the project coordinator.

Katrin Krupka

To upload your thesis on the Graduates platform, please fill out this form.

To access the form, please contact the contact person at your university. From there you will receive an access code. You will find a list with the corresponding contact data under contact persons.

What are the conditions of participation?

The announcement of the German Design Graduates Initiative is aimed at graduates of German universities. Eligible to participate are Bachelor, Master and Diploma graduates from the 2020 participating universities (link) with a graduation date of May 1 2020 to June 30 2021 from the field of product and industrial design, as well as interface students with links to physical objects. One project can be submitted per participant.

Group submissions are possible. Registration is exclusively online. The registration form must be filled out in German and English. All questions must be answered truthfully and in an adequate manner of expression. Photographic material must be provided in the format requested. All submitted texts and images will be published on the Graduates platform after sending the registration form (expected august 2021).

Only submissions that are submitted in due time and form will take part in the selection process for the exhibition. The deadlines stated on the GDG website apply. The online registration form must be completed and sent in by June 30, 2021 23:59h at the latest. There are no entry fees for the participating graduates. Prerequisite for the submission of the registration form is the acceptance of our privacy policy and general terms and conditions.