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DesignX Startup Accelerator: Igniting Innovation through Design Thinking

Updated: Jul 11, 2023

✨ About DesignX ✨

  • DesignX is a dynamic 2-month accelerator program hosted by the Izmir University of Economics Technology Transfer Office.

  • It aims to foster collaboration between technology and design, enabling the creation of innovative products and services.

  • Entrepreneurs join forces to develop their business ideas, guided by the powerful principles of design thinking.

💡 Goals 💡

  • Cultivate a deep understanding of customer and user needs, fostering empathy-driven solutions.

  • Promote interdisciplinary teamwork, harnessing diverse perspectives and expertise.

  • Unleash creativity to discover and develop groundbreaking ideas for products and services.

  • Master the art of prototyping, translating concepts into tangible and compelling solutions.

  • Drive the commercialization of innovative products, transforming ideas into sustainable ventures.

🚀 The Process 🚀

1️⃣ Introduction to Entrepreneurship:

  • Immerse entrepreneurs in the basics of entrepreneurship, fueling their passion and vision.

  • Form teams through speed networking, igniting collaboration, and brainstorming for business ideas.

  • Equip entrepreneurs with techniques to validate their ideas and create solid business model canvases.

2️⃣ Research:

  • Introduce design thinking techniques, preparing entrepreneurs for customer interactions.

  • Conduct one-on-one interviews with customers and users, applying observation techniques for deeper insights.

3️⃣ Define:

  • Create personas based on research presentations, capturing the essence of target customers.

  • Perform detailed problem definition through research and analysis, setting the stage for innovative solutions.

4️⃣ Ideation & Prototyping:

  • Dive into the study of product features, analyzing needs, and exploring solution development methods.

  • Develop the design of the envisioned product, pushing the boundaries of innovation.

  • Leverage university workshops to transform ideas into working prototypes, breathing life into concepts.

5️⃣ Business Modeling:

  • Empower entrepreneurs with business modeling expertise, shaping their vision into a viable plan.

  • Provide insights into financial management, guiding the creation of scalable enterprises and growth strategies.

6️⃣ Demo Day:

  • Equip teams with practical training for investor presentations, emphasizing body language and delivery.

  • Present business ideas and prototypes to a captivated audience of potential investors, showcasing the fruits of their labor.

🌟 Outcomes 🌟

  • Invaluable user and customer research, grounding ventures in real-world needs and demands.

  • A wealth of creative business ideas, meticulously developed and refined.

  • Production of prototypes at the esteemed IUE Design Workshop, showcasing tangible manifestations of innovation.

  • Robust business models and plans, laying the foundation for sustainable growth.

  • The grand culmination: Demo Day, where entrepreneurs dazzle investors with their vision and prototypes.

  • The ultimate outcome: the birth of sustainable and innovative startups that push the boundaries of what's possible.

🎯 Program Highlights 🎯

  • Successfully completed two seasons (2018 & 2019), sparking the growth of over 60 entrepreneurs.

  • A dynamic 2-month program that fosters innovation, collaboration, and tangible outcomes.

  • More than 30 impressive prototypes were created, each representing a visionary entrepreneur's journey.

DesignX Startup Accelerator fuels the flames of innovation, empowering entrepreneurs to create the future they envision. Join us on this extraordinary journey of creativity, collaboration, and relentless pursuit of groundbreaking ideas. Together, we will redefine the world of startups, one transformative venture at a time.


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