Anne Asensio receives honorary doctorate for contributions to Umeå Institute of Design


Anne Asensio, experienced car designer, previously at Renault and General Motors, has been appointed honorary doctor at Umeå University following her significant contributions to Umeå Institute of Design.

In 2007, Anne joined Dassault Systems as the Vice President of Design Experience where she oversees the development of cutting-edge 3D solutions. For the past fifteen years she has been an important voice in UID's strategic development.

Initially, she was recruited by then rector Anna Valtonen to sit on UID's strategic board. Through her extensive knowledge of industrial design, her personal commitment and her broad international network, she was able to play an integral part in charting the school's progressive path over the past decade. 

Assensio2 Anne Asensio during her keynote adress at UID17. Photo: Peder Fällefors.

"What is unique here at UID is having bachelor- and master's programmes together with research under one roof. Housing the whole spectrum at the school is so important, from the practical use of different technologies at the bachelor's level all the way to the PhD-research that is more reflective and critical in nature. This continuum offers a common thread at the school that helps designers understand how technology can best be used to answer the real needs in our societies, from a human-centered perspective", said Anne Asensio during her visit to UID17, where she was a keynote speaker.

In his role as head of the MFA Transportation Design Programme Demian Horst has been on the receiving end of the experienced support that Anne has provided to the school.

"Anne's first contact with UID happened when she still worked for General Motors in Detroit, USA. She approached about 15 years ago while searching for fresh talent to join that traditional car brand. The relationship with the school has continued and apart from her influential role in the Strategic Board she has, on several occasions, supported the Transportation Design programme as external advisor during the master thesis examination", says Demian Horst.

"Anne Asensio is an influencer both in the design and the tech arenas. She is an advocate of the importance of using design in connection to technology as the means to approach future challenges in a systemic way, with focus on the whole user experience rather than isolated services, products or solutions", concludes Demian Horst.

June 2019