Service Design Strategies and Innovations (SDSI) is an international Masters’ programme that is jointly designed and delivered by three Nordic partners — the Art Academy of Latvia (AAL), the University of Lapland in Finland, and the Estonian Art Academy. On behalf of the SDSI consortium, in September 2022, AAL signed the grant agreement with the European Education and Culture Executive Agency, becoming a Joint Master’s Degree Programme in Service Design Strategies and Innovations.
The SDSI consortium points out that Europe is undergoing a significant change that results in a shifting of existing socioeconomic paradigms and requires new ways to develop human–centric solutions in situations of increasing uncertainty. Desire for a sustainable approach of doing business and experiencing a quality life have defined ambitious goals set forth in the Green Deal and needs for ensuring of competitiveness in a way where parts of population and business are not left behind have resulted in critical initiatives of Digital Transformation. These challenges and aspirations need radically improved or even completely new solutions. They even require entirely new ways of understanding and interpreting of the problems and needs in complex and uncertain contexts. The answer to this is a multi–disciplinary, joint–degree awarding Service Design Strategy and Innovation Masters’ programme, involving the Art Academy of Latvia, the University of Lapland, the Estonian Academy of Arts, and the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga, aimed at educating of leaders who will be able to address ongoing shift to sustainability and digitalisation in a human–centered way. SDSI will prepare students to become versatile service innovators who can enable change in public and private organisations through strategic design, management, and creative leadership. Its focus is on interdisciplinary studies and cross–specialisation in design, business, technologies, and social sciences. SDSI graduates will become change facilitators to contribute to innovative, effective, and socially responsible service organisations globally and in their home countries after graduation.
Duration of the Project is from 01 October, 2022 till 30 November, 2028. During this period, four student enrollments will be organised, starting with the study year 2023/2024. During each enrollment, around 30 international students will be admitted — at least 121 students in total for the duration of the project. 100 of the students will originate from the Erasmus+ Programme Countries, and 60 of them will be selected for the Erasmus Mundus scholarship of 1400 euros per month for the duration of their studies (no more than 10% of the total number of scholarships will be awarded to students from the same nationality). Additional students will be selected and scholarships awarded to 21 students from the groups of the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation (NDICI — 18 students) countries, as well as the Instrument for Pre–Accession Assistance (IPA — 3 students) countries. SDSI students will spend at least two study periods in two countries which are different from their country of residence — Latvia, Finland, and Estonia.
The total grant amount of the project is 4 899 600 euros, including 2 721 600 euros that are allocated for student scholarships. Two regional associated partners from Latvia — the Kuldīga District Municipality and the Kuldīga Artists’ Residence — also participate in the project, in order to ensure extra– curricular and cultural experiences for SDSI students at their Latvian study location, the town of Kuldīga.