Shumka Centre / Design for Startups | Spring 2017

Design for Startups engages top student designers to work directly with technical and business leads of early-stage companies. Through this initiative we have developed and tested a new model for connecting the art and design university with accelerators and early-stage technology companies. 


This spring, we are pleased to welcome 10 BC-based companies and 10 Research Assistants to the project:


A&K Robotics is a stealth technology start-up based in Vancouver, Canada. We design and build robots and want to change the world through automation. Our multi-disciplinary team of engineers and scientists is building an intelligent navigation system to automate light industrial work. We are taking on the dangerous and the dull so that people can focus on the dull and the creative. |

Cassia is a fintech company based out of Vancouver – we are firefighters for investment portfolios. Our web software monitors and matches risk to meet client expectations so that investment advisors won’t be bogged down by phone calls and can focus on winning clients. Unlike 99% of software in the space, our UX is so good that wealth managers and advisors are up and running within minutes. |

Close Quickly is a content management platform that helps bring enterprise sales and marketing teams together to accelerate sales.

Curatio is a free app that connects patients and caregivers to others who know what they’re going through.  Getting the right support, engagement and education to the right person at the right time is what Curatio is all about. We help you deliver clinically proven self-management solutions that empower people to lead their healthiest lives – all through a private mobile app platform. As a member of our communities, you can learn about your condition from a trusted source, gain peace of mind with health-tracking tools, and get support from others just like you. |

Headstart Medical is a medical device start-up which manufactures corrective helmets for misshaped baby heads and is currently working on developing a better diagnostic assessment tool to identify these development issues earlier, allowing more responsive and preventative treatment to enable symmetrical head growth and development.

KuuCall is a phone call tracking and analytics software that helps businesses understand when, why, what, how, where the leads/calls are coming from, so they can use the data to make better business decisions. |

Maptiks is an analytics technology for maps. The tool turns web map interactions into actionable insights in order to increase engagement on your web maps. See how your users are interacting with your maps. Maptiks provides in-depth user insights by tracking how users click, pan, and zoom on your web maps. The platform is built for GIS developers who require richer, detailed analytics, and supports the open source community of web map developers. |

neartuit is a proximity based online Story Management System that is used to easily create multi-media mobile experiences that increase visitor engagement. For their visitors, neartuit is a free app triggered by iBeacons that seamlessly changes to new content as they move through these spaces. Made by TerraTap. |

Tap Media Worx has created a scalable cloud based enterprise system that allows the tagging, tracking and tapping of a nearly unlimited set of arbitrary objects in streaming media and photos, without altering the original content. Tap’s innovative software connects producers of streaming media and static images with those wanting to advertise or promote a product, person or place. | TapMediaWorx

TimberTracks is a web-based data collection program that validates and audits data from contractors and aggregate statistics to provide standardized hourly equipment costs and operating conditions that affect productivity. TimberTracks produces actionable insights that allow historical performance to be benchmarked to industry norms, performance gaps to be identified, and future scope of costs to be forecasted. |


Spring 2017 Research Assistants

Nina Chen was born in Shanghai, China, and moved to Vancouver nine years ago. She is currently a 4th year interaction design student at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. She was involved in various health and communication service projects while pursuing her bachelor degree at ECUAD. Nina builds her interest around how we live and how we communicate. During her school years, Nina is searching for design strategies which help to enhance urban living experience consistently.

Mia Feng is an industrial design student in ECUAD. She hopes to one day create products and systems that could meet real needs, and explore new interpretation of how we view the world. Products and systems relate to people’s need, which she thinks is crucial for finding the correct relationship between human needs and personal ideation that could fit in societal environments. In the process of design, she focuses on the stage of research, by encoding and analyzing the results from her research to create design directions, originating ideas and developing concepts, using drawing, sketching and prototyping. She is interested in human-centered design at service, experience and technology. She aims to connect the experience with her skills and design thinking.

Celine Hong is in the third year of her industrial design degree. She believes in design as a way of thinking and a method of approaching problems. Understanding that design is more than creating specific solutions like products, interfaces, or graphics, she approaches design with an interdisciplinary mindset. With the prevalence of design in our world and the user-centered nature of the process, she knows that design has the potential and the duty to innovate and produce meaningful work. While working as a Research Assistant for the Health Design Lab at Emily Carr, she collaborated with partners like the BC Ministry of Health and the Provincial Health Services Authority. This past summer she also participated in Emily Carr’s Liminal Labs at the Triennale di Milano and their explorations into relocation and collaboration.

Nasim Khosravifarsani is an industrial designer and currently is in the Master of Design program at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. She also has a BA in Industrial Design from University of Tehran. In the last five years of her professional experience in design, she has been working in multidisciplinary areas, from designing to manufacturing for exhibition, interior, packaging and product design projects. She believes in the responsibility and the effectiveness of design in creating better environment and experiences for a better life. Her research areas of interest include sustainable and cultural design. In doing her master thesis she is focusing on creating and discovering implementations for design to affect the environmental issues through educating people to be more powerful and knowledgeable. She hopes this will lead to literate responsible citizens who care more about their environment.

Michael Lee is the Creative Director and Founder of M_Lee Creative Studio. He has a background in Chemical-Physics and Forensic Science from Simon Fraser University and also has a Bachelor of Design in Industrial Design from Emily Carr University of Art + Design. Throughout his career, Michael is recognized as a multidisciplinary designer. He believes that being a creative individual should not be about limiting oneself to one discipline or medium, instead, it should be about exploring other possibilities, and learning and challenging oneself continuously. Michael specializes in creative problem solving and human-centered designs. He has created health care improvements for Providence Health Care, co-hosted human-centred design workshops for the Health Design Lab at Emily Carr University, built brands and websites for local businesses and have worked with major brands such as Coca-Cola and Pepper Lunch. Michael is also passionate about startups and has acted as the design consultant for local startup tech companies Orello and H+ Technology. Michael’s vision for M_Lee Creative Studio is for it to become a comprehensive creative solution for all businesses and professions; and that it would be a place where the logicals and the creatives meet.

George Lysikatos is a Graphic Designer and a Violinist, currently enrolled in the Master of Design program at Emily Carr University of Art and Design. He has a BA in Graphic Design from the University of Central Lancashire and a background in classical music studies from the State Conservatory of Thessaloníki and in Geology from Aristotle University of Thessaloníki, Greece. He has worked for the previous three years at advertising and visual communication agencies, contributing to the winning of several design awards. He has worked, among others, for brands like Canon, MINI, Honda Motorcycles, Mitsubishi, Hawaiian Tropic and Bank of Cyprus. He spends his spare time exploring urban art, playing soccer and watching movies.

Leslie Mu is a communication designer. During her studying in Emily Carr University, she gained years of valuable experience in UX&UI, graphic design, research, branding, and system design. Within that process, she found her pursuit in human-centred and experience design, especially in fields of medical, social, and behaviour change. Meanwhile, she discovered her strengths in generating design elements into concepts and maintaining a holistic view over the design process while perfecting it in pixels. Given the gift of having synaesthesia, Leslie has strong memories and rich feelings, which makes her an empathetic person. With that in mind, she believes that empathy empowers designers to make full use of their talents to generate meaningful solutions to real problems.

Amber Pan is a fourth year student in Communication Design Major. She has been working on publication, branding and UX/UI design for the past years. Her grad project address the environment problems in our society. She loves photography and traveling around the world.

Qing Yao is a fourth year interaction design student at Emily Carr University of Art and design. He focuses on his work in UX/ UI design. He gained quite knowledges in web technology through out his school year. He chose to work in the interaction design field because of his interests in digital technology. Also because of this, he always considers the relationship between people and technology, and challenges people about how they use technologies in their lives.

Scott Yu-Jan is a user experience and product designer with a background in interaction design and industrial design. With this double major he approaches problems through different lenses, creating more relevant and appropriate solutions. He helps bring the ideas that entrepreneurs and start-ups have, to a production ready stage by going through a human-cantered design process, making sure that the result is an enjoyable and memorable user experience. In the past he has provided these services for medical product companies designing health monitoring wearable devices and apps. He has also worked in the film industry designing and creating props for clients such as Disney, Netflix, and The CW. |

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