Assoc Prof Rafael Gomez

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Program Leader - Mobility Futures

PhD (Queensland University of Technology), Master of Applied Science (Queensland University of Technology)

Currently seeking PhD applications across emerging technologies application to advanced manufacturing, experience design, design and emotion, wearable tech for design and health, and design with technology for empathy. Learn more around the project for Design with Technology for Empathy. Apply for QUT scholarships (2021). Also seeking PhD and Master of Philosophy Students for the BMW Group + QUT Design Academy. Apply for project (2021). School of Design Exhibition Committee Chair / Lead Researcher QUT Design Lab / Study Tour (2015, 2017, 2018) / Lead Researcher People & Systems Lab

Associate Professor Rafael Gomez has led Industrial Design program as Study Area Coordinator for 5 years. He is a design researcher for QUT Design Lab and a prominent researcher in the field of emotional experience, wearable tech for medical/health applications and emerging technologies. He works closely with global industry partners and leads the BMW Group + QUT Design Academy (securing over $2M cash and in-kind contribution) which focuses on fostering design excellence, exploring new knowledge horizons and advancing cutting-edge technologies through internships, research and special R+D projects with BMW Group in Germany. Assoc Prof Gomez has developed frameworks for emotional experience currently being used by global industry leaders such as BMW to better understand peoples' evolving emotional experience with devices, interfaces, services and systems. He has developed an emerging track-record in applied research with wearable technologies in the medical/health area - having recently worked on a non-invasive respiratory device for covid-19 alongside Science and Engineering and Prince Charles Hospital.  He helped secure close to $60,000 through the Cotton Research Development Corporation (CRDC) to explore the feasibility of using cotton in 3D printing. In 2015 Dr Gomez was co-curator of an international art exhibition: Wear Next_ An Exploration into the Future of Wearable Technology. This exhibition brought together artist, designers and technologists from Asia-Pacific, North America and Europe to investigate the future of wearable technology. He has been invited to present at leading institutions including Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong Baptist University, Tsinghua University, National University of Singapore, Singapore Polytechnic, Fu Jen Catholic University, Technical University of Munich, IIT Institute of Design among others. He has contributed as a research theme leader for the People and Systems Lab and has secured over $1M in funding including national competitive grant schemes and direct industry funding. Dr Gomez developed, deployed and manages the new Industrial Design degree at QUT and has coordinated and written curriculum across all years in the School of Design. He was also part of a team that led the development of a cross-faculty Work Integrated Learning curriculum. Due to his international network another key role for Dr Gomez is to continue building strategic pathways with international institutions (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong Baptist University, KAIST, Technical University Munich, Delft University, HTW Berlin, among others) and world-class industry (BMW, Bombardier, TechTronics Industries, IDEO, ZIBA, among others) at the teaching and research level. One way Dr Gomez continues to build this agenda is to lead the highly successful Asia study tour, which has secured competitive grant funding from the Australian Federal Government through the New Colombo Plan to the value of $330,000. In addition, Dr Gomez brings over 15 years’ industry experience as a designer for small, medium and large enterprises across aviation, construction, medical, government and consumer electronics. For almost 10 years he was design director for Propaganda Mill, a multidisciplinary design company working across product design, branding, graphics, high-end visualisation, projection graphics and virtual/augmented reality. Recent Achievements:

  • Founder and Head of BMW Group + QUT Design Academy
  • Vice-Chancellor’s Performance Individual Award – Partnership & Engagement 2020
  • Awarded Creative Industries Faculty Teaching Innovation and Excellence Award 2020
  • Awarded Healthcare Excellence Acceleration Lab (HEAL), Queensland Health research funding ($180,000)
  • Awarded Cotton Research Development Corporation (CRDC) research funding ($58,000)
  • Awarded Teaching & Learning seed research grant ($40,000)
  • Awarded New Colombo Plan grant funding (competitive Australian Federal Government grant) Asia study tour 2016, 2018, 2019, 2020 (over $330,000)
  • Invited Delegate; Australian delegation to Korea for research and industry collaboration
  • Nominated for Inaugural David Gardiner Teacher of the Year Award
  • Nominated for University Doctoral Outstanding Thesis Award

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