Information Design Summer School , Syros, Greece.

29 September to 4 October 2013

Syros island, Greece 





Come to Syros, Greece for a week of expert tuition and deep discussions on Information Design -how to make complex information easier to understand, all while savouring late summer warmth.

The summer school is being organised by the University of the Aegean, with the participation of the Simplification Centre, London, UK, and the International Institute of Information Design. 



Course summary

Modern life is saturated with complex information and data. For information to have the most impact, it must be easy to find, simple to use and instant to understand. In short, information needs to be designed.

Information design has developed as a specialist field, with a growing research literature and critical tradition. However, specialist education and training in information design is hard to find and many people come to it from another aspect of design or some other profession entirely. As a result, people who want to develop their expertise can find themselves isolated, without access to expert help, and often without like-minded colleagues.

You will meet with leading experts in information design, who cover a range of different specialisms, and related research, including:

  • diagramming and visualisation
  • typography
  • design for all (inclusive design)
  • design education
  • health and pharmaceutical information design 
  • clear writing 
  • editorial structures
  • government information
  • legal information design
  • information design in organisations.


We will cover many, but not all of these areas in the lectures, but the expertise and experience is available from the course tutors – we encourage participants to bring questions, issues and projects from their workplace or college.

Teaching methods

The course is taught in English. There will be lectures, case studies, group working, individual project work, presentations and discussions. And social activities – we will be in a beautiful Syros location at the end of the summer.

The programme will focus on practical projects, but it will be informed by an appropriate level of research evidence and theory.

There will be an emphasis on:

  • critical methods: how to discuss design and diagnose design problems.
  • information architecture and systems thinking: finding the underlying structures in complex information; understanding its purpose and effect.
  • understanding users: user journeys, personas, scenarios and use cases.
  • design patterns, genres and templates.
  • accessibility and design for all
  • research and user testing.

We will tailor the practical projects to meet your needs, and you are encouraged to bring your own projects to work on with expert help during the week.



The course takes place on the beautiful island of Syros, with social activities and an excursion during the week. Participants are welcome to bring partners and/or families, although we won’t be organising special programmes or facilities for them.


Who should come

  • Information designers who want to explore the conceptual basis for their work, and focus on a wider range of ideas than they can in their workplace.
  • People new to information design, who want to learn more about it, and apply it to their own area of work.
  • Postgraduate students working at MA or PhD level, who would like additional tutorial support and access to a like-minded group.


Prior learning and technical skills

 Please note that we do not offer software training in applications such as Adobe InDesign or Illustrator, or in web or app design applications. Don’t worry – these are not essential, as projects also involve sketching and organising information. We recommend that you bring a laptop computer. When you register for the course, we will ask about your interests and existing skills, and design individual projects to suit your needs.

The “University of the Aegean Summer Schools” are supported by the project «The University of the Aegean, the prominent and driving factor for the economic and social growth of the wide Aegean area» of the Operational Programme “Education and Lifelong Learning”, which is co-funded by European Union (European Social Fund) and National Resources.

With the support of:
© University of the Aegean; Design by Ioannis Markakis