Visiting Scholar Programme

The School of Design Innovation welcomes international scholars while they explore innovative approaches to studio production and academic research.

The School of Design Innovation at Victoria University of Wellington welcomes designers/artists/educators from around the world to engage in independent research or creative activity through our Visiting Scholar Programme.

The programme promotes international understanding through educational and cultural exchanges, and is currently seeking applicants exploring experimental and innovative approaches to studio production and academic research.

Our School of Design Innovation is located in Wellington, the coolest little capital in the world and a vibrant city known for its arts and cafe culture. We have recently been ranked as the #1 Design School in New Zealand, with our wider university grabbing overall top score for research quality.

Visiting Scholars have full access to the spectrum of lectures and events sponsored by the University, as well as a shared office/studio space and a workstation loaded with relevant design production software. Our faculty also hosts an impressive range of traditional and digital fabrication facilities, including multi-property additive manufacturing machines, micro-electronics labs and a cluster computing grid.

Previous visiting scholars

Fumio Obata
Fumio Obata.

Fumio Obata

Fumio Obata is a comic book author whose work and inspiration come from cultural differences and social issues in his surroundings. He is a specialist in sequential image design and also an illustrator and lecturer in Art and Design. He style and work are influenced by both Japanese and European esthetics. He studied BA Illustration at Glasgow School of Art between 1997 and 1999 and obtained a Master degree in Communication Design from Royal College of Art in London in 2003.

Fumio also has a career as an animator. Between 2003 and 2008 he worked with Duran Duran, Channel4, and joined Redkite Animations in Edinburgh in 2006. In Edinburgh, he worked on numbers of joint projects with DC Thompson.

He is latest Graphic Novels ‘Just So Happens’ published by Jonathan Cape, Random House, has won many high acclaims and now been translated and published in 8 different countries.

In 2013 he was offered a senior lecturer post for the BA Illustration course at the University of Gloucestershire in England and currently supporting young talents to develop their own/unique artistic voices in various sequential contexts such as animation, graphic novel and children’s book.

He currently focuses on comic strip reportage inspired by the Japan’s 2011 triple disaster that involved a controversial nuclear accident. His theme expands into the relation between environment and paganism which strongly constitutes the heart of Japanese identity.

Ding Zhou
Ding Zhou.

Ding Zhou

In 2014, Ding Zhou was as a 1-year visiting scholar at the School of Design Innovation. He carried out a research program about innovative design applications of 3D Printing/Additive Manufacturing.

Ding Zhou gained a B.A. in industrial design from Zhejiang Sci-Tech University in 2006. After graduation with the M.A. in art design from Shandong University in 2009, he was hired as a lecturer in industrial design by the School of Industrial Design,Nanjing University of the Arts.

Ding Zhou’s current research interest is in 3D Printing-based Co-creation.

How to apply

You can apply for a visiting scholar position at any time during the academic year. The length of a visit may vary between 1 to 12 months in total.

Please provide a statement of intent that describes:

  • why you want to visit the School of Design Innovation
  • goals and objectives
  • the intended dates of your visit
  • examples of how you would envision engaging with the school during your visit
  • specific staff or research groups you may want to work with
  • sources of funding for the trip.

Please also provide:

  • your current CV
  • a web-based portfolio
  • lists of courses you have taught (if applicable)
  • a recommendation letter from your manager (chair, head of school, dean, etc).

Please send your application to the Visiting Scholar Programme coordinator.