Clement Norman, a third-year student on the Graphic Communication Design BA Honours course, has been shortlisted for the 2020-21 RSA Student Design Awards for his project entitled ‘Hex-Agro’.

Design concept for Hex-Agro project by student Clement Norman
Hex-Agro design concept by Clement Norman

Clement’s Hex-Agro design proposal is a compact food forest system designed to promote growing food sustainably while stimulating animal habitats, bio diversity and bio tourism. The project aims to combat global deforestation and encourages sustainable and ethical agricultural practice, and was submitted as part of the Royal Society for Arts’ student competition for emerging designers who want to make a difference.

The ‘A New Leaf’ brief asked students how they might utilise local woodland resources to stimulate inclusive and sustainable economic activity. Hex-Agro was produced as part of the Information Applications module on the Graphic Communications Design BA Honours course, which explores the subjects of design for social impact, design responsibility and incorporates systems thinking alongside rigorous research.

Clement recently took part in the final stage of judging which involves a series of interviews with each of the finalists, where they are invited to discuss their competition entry with the judging panels. He said: “Designers should try to learn from nature’s complexity rather than try to fight against it.”

Talking about Clement’s achievement, Iwona Abrams, Senior Lecturer and Information Applications module leader, said: “The great value in our students entering competitions such as the RSA Design Awards is in promoting conversations on the Role of Design and its future beyond the glass walls and relative safety of an educational institution. As a design educator, it is my belief that we need to create a culture of learning, which encourages students to formulate their own design philosophies by reflecting upon the world in which they live. 

“The strength of Clement’s project lies in its connection to the real world and deep understanding that design outcomes have consequences. It proves that Design Responsibility is about the ability to respond, not merely willingness to act. The RSA, as nationally esteemed competition, is a true test for the students to measure their work against their peers and future leaders in industry. The GCD department wishes Clement the best of luck in the final selection, however to make the shortlist is already a great achievement.”

The final winners of the competition will be announced in June and the RSA will celebrate their projects at an awards ceremony later in the year. 

Find out more about Art, Design and Visual Culture courses at the University of Westminster.

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