Global Engineering Design Studio

Delivered in partnership with seven of the leading engineering institutions in the world, the Global Engineering Design Studio program allows students from across the world collaborate together to propose innovative solutions to pressing global issues. 

This year, GEDS will focus on Sustainable Cities and Communities – UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11. Design teams consisting of students from different universities with the guidance of mentors and faculty, will apply human-centred design approaches to further focus on one of three more specific challenges:

  • How can we preserve or improve the quality of our water in critical areas? (also intersecting with SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation)
  • How might we preserve our biodiversity? (also intersecting with SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure)
  • How might we navigate traffic congestion as populations in urban settings surge? (also intersecting with SDG 15: Life on Land)


What is the Global Engineering Design Studio?

The Global Engineering Design Studio is an eight-week, 100% virtual program in which students from across the world collaborate in order to propose innovative solutions to pressing global issues. Students work with peers from other institutions to engage in the process of human-centered design and explore topics such as Equitable & Inclusive Problem Solving, Prototyping, Creating a Pitch, and more!

Workshops are delivered once per week as students collaborate over the eight weeks. Mentors provide feedback and support to teams as they ideate, prototype, and synthesize real solutions.

pic of developing skills

Apply your disciplinary knowledge through the process of human-centered design and exercise skills that employers look for such as communication, teamwork, project management, entrepreneurship, leadership, and problem-solving.

pic of building connections

Collaborate with peers and colleagues from across the world and learn about what sustainability looks like on a global scale.

pic of making a difference

Engage in a design project focused on a real-world problem and present an innovative solution that contributes to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Partner Institutions


Logo of UCL

Logo of McMaster

Logo of Monash University

Logo of the University of Auckland

Logo of University of Toronto

Logo of USCViterbi

2022 Program Timeline

Sessions will be delivered during the weekends of:

February 19
February 26
March 5
March 12
March 19
March 26
April 2
April 9

Specific times and dates TBD.

Challenge Areas

Over the course of the program, students will focus on one of three United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that have global ramifications.

Eligibility & Application Process

Online Application: Application closed on February 13th, 11:59 pm (EST), 2022. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this a course?

The Global Engineering Design Studio is a co-curricular program, not a course. Students will apply the disciplinary knowledge they have gained throughout their program of study towards completing a project as part of the program.

This program will allow student participants to receive CCR recognition.

Who can apply for this program?

For the McGill cohort, undergraduate Faculty of Engineering students are eligible to apply. Participants are expected to have a solid base of disciplinary knowledge while also being able to make a significant time commitment to the program.

What is the time commitment?

This program runs for 8 weeks from mid-February to early April. Each week there will be two sessions delivered on the weekend, equalling approximately 4 hours of content per week. These sessions are designed to be inclusive with no participation required between weeks (note: you are encouraged to continue collaborating and networking with your global team as much as possible!)

Can I apply with friends?

Teams will be formed such that each member comes from a different institution. We encourage all interested to apply, but please note that you will not be placed on a team with another student from your institution.

When are sessions held?

Sessions are held on the weekends of the program. Each session is delivered by one of the participating institutions at a time of their choosing. Therefore, there may be some sessions delivered very early or very late in the day depending on your timezone.

    What is the structure of the workshops?

    There are two workshops delivered during each week of the program, and in general they follow the process of human-centered design. The first half of the program focuses on narrowing down a problem your team wants to work on, and the second half focuses on generating a robust solution. The workshops are rooted in active learning, so there will be some content delivered by an instructor and a lot of time dedicated to you and your team actually working during the sessions. The program is designed in a way such that most, if not all, of the work is done during the workshops as to not give you extra work during the school term. Each session will have an instructor from one of the participating institutions, so there may be some McGill instructors and there will be instructors from McMaster University, University of Toronto, Monash University, etc.

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