Graduation Project - Designing a bike for children in The Gambia - Update 1


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Supported by


Supported by



This is my graduation project, and it began in October 2013 and will run through until June 2014.


Design is generally thought of as something that only the rich can afford. Expensive products, high end furniture, the latest technology, expensive medical products, things that people want but don't necessarily need. And as much as I love designer products, I know designers have an opportunity to impact the world in a much deeper way than simply creating new products to make people happy. This project was my first chance to do that.


To enable more school children in The Gambia to attend school through the provision of an efficient transport solution in the form of a bicycle. The new solution will be in the form of a frame and will be extremely hard wearing, use readily available components, easy to repair using a minimal amount of tools, safer to ride by people of different ages and crucially will be cheap to manufacture.


To enable children in The Gambia to receive the education they deserve.


Video from a similar project


Initial Research Areas

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Base of Pyramid Design

Looking into how developing countries are one of the biggest untapped markets.

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Designing for the Other 90%

Gaining understanding into how to design for people earning less than $2 a day.

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Bicycle Design

Being able to understand the essentials of bicycle design will be needed for the project.

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Appropriate Design Processes

Reading into various design processes to gain knowledge into what works for these markets

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Use Scenarios

Creating basic storyboards of how the bikes are actually used day to day

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As I cannot visit The Gambia until later in the project, interviews were done to gain an understanding of the context.


Design Process

A custom design process was created based in the initial research. This will be followed throughout the project allowing all areas to be investigated and ensuring the project's focus is always on the end users.


Next Steps



Sketch and model the design for the bicycle frame.



Take the initial prototype to The Gambia for user testing.



Build final prototype based on research from testing.



Deliver final proposal and implementation guidelines.