Kristof Vaes

Doctor Assistant / Care & Care Technology - Design for Interaction

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About Kristof Vaes

PhD in Product Development - TU Delft / University of Antwerp

In 1996 I obtained my master degree in product development (with distinction) from the University College of Antwerp.
From 1997 onwards, I have worked for several design teams and offices in Flanders, such as Bulo office furniture (Mechelen), Achilles design (Mechelen), and Studio Dott. (Antwerp). Most of my design practice is focused on human-centered design, concept development and engineering design. Since 2006, I combine my activities as a product designer with an academic career. My teaching tasks at the University of Antwerp, Faculty of Design Sciences, have included lecturing on the topic of 'Product Semantics' and tutoring design projects such as ‘User Experience Design’, ‘Exploring Interactions’, ‘Mechanical Design’, ‘Furniture Design’ and 'Master projects in Product Development'. In april 2014 I obtained a PhD in Product Development (UA) and Industrial Design Engineering (TU-Delft - Prof. P.J.Stappers). My research focuses on the semantic aspects of less popular products, such as assistive, protective or medical devices. In my book 'Product Stigmaticity - Understanding, Measuring and Managing Product-Related Stigma' I present a set of measuring techniques and design tools that can assist designers if they are faced with the challenge of designing a stigma sensitive product.

As a Post-doc researcher I focus on the field of care and care technology. Within this field we focus on the development of systems, products and services that improve the quality of care and the overall patient experience. In close cooperation with academic and industrial partners we valorize the results of scientific research into products and services that meet the complex needs of care providers and care receivers.


  • 2014-... : Post-doc researcher at UA / Freelance designer & consultant
  • 2013-2014: Tutor 'Exploring Interactions' at TU Delft - Major 'Design for Interaction'
  • 2008-2014: PhD research in collaboration with TU Delft and UA
  • 2006-2014: Freelance designer / Assistant teacher at Artesis Univ. College and UA 
  • 2009-2012: Industrial designer - Studio Dott. / 
  • 2003-2006: Industrial designer - Achilles Design /
  • 2000-2003: Industrial designer - BULO Office Furniture /
  • 1998-1999: Design researcher for D-Science Lab (Product Development / Univ. College Antwerp)

Expertise / Research interests

  • Design for interaction
  • (Health) Care & care technology
  • User experience design / Human centered design
  • Inclusive design / Universal design
  • Product semantics / Product usability
  • Design thinking

Statute & functions

Assisterend academisch pers.
  • doctor assistent

Internal mandates


Ambtmanstraat 1
2000 Antwerpen
Tel. 032659487