Minor: HZ Studio

In the minor HZ Studio, you choose between the tracks Design Thinking or Applied Research. With Design Thinking, you think creatively about innovative projects in the region. In Applied Research, you work together with an HZ research group on a challenging research project. With both tracks, you will learn to think creatively, critically and inquisitively and to cooperate successfully.

Design thinking track

Design thinking projects you can work on are for example improving business processes in hotels, creating circular business models for campsites or designing healthy living methods for regional residents. You participate in several projects at the same time in different teams. You will learn to apply the Design Thinking approach in each challenge you face. You do this with The Studio's Design Thinking toolkit, divided into four phases: discover, define, develop and deliver.

Besides the 15 and 30 credits it's also possible to enroll for smaller credit entities. See the drop down menu below.

Applied research track

When you choose applied research, you will work in close collaboration with HZ researchers on a range of relevant topics. You practice your applied research skills and gain expertise in cases that require urgent and valuable knowledge, resulting from empirical studies.

  • Energy Transition
  • Water Technology
  • Biobased Building
  • Circulair Economy
  • Going Green
  • Marine Biobased Chemistry
  • HZenzor
  • Climate Adaptation

You can read more about the different research projects in the drop-down menu below.

Structure of the minor HZ Studio

HZ Studio is a collaborative environment where everybody shares thoughts and opinions. You figure out your own steps and discuss progress with your coach. For both the design thinking projects track as for the applied research track, we have suggested steps, tools, inspiration and coaching at hand. Furthermore, your fellow students are here to assist and motivate you as well. The strong sense of community and regular social activities stimulate creativity and wellbeing.

With the HZ Studio minor, depending on the assignment you work on, you may contribute to these Sustainable Development Goals:

  • SDG 3: Improve wellbeing by putting emphasis in each innovation on the quality of visiting or living in Zeeland.
  • SDG 11: Enable the regeneration of Zeeland by means of projects and innovations that make places more inclusive, sustainable and resilient.
  • SDG 12: Embrace responsible consumption and production, for instance by nudging sustainable mobility or using food waste of restaurants for other purposes.

Energy Transition

During this applied research project you learn more about financial, social, technical and creative aspects of energy transition. Solutions to achieve the energy transition are complex and stakeholders often have conflicting interests. With a multidisciplinary team of 3 or 4 students, you will learn to approach solutions from different areas of expertise and perspectives.

For more information, send an e-mail to Wim Huibregtse

Water Technology

In this research project, you will contribute to developing techniques to (re)use water as efficiently as possible. This includes recycling surface water and process water for industries, agriculture and aquaculture. But also recovering valuable (food) substances from waste water, and managing and monitoring water purification plants. You will conduct your research in collaboration with fellow students and researchers.

For more information, send an e-mail to Bart Letterie

Biobased Building

In the Biobased Building Research project, you conduct research into (new) biobased materials and into the health claims related to these innovations. In this way, you contribute to the expansion and improvement of existing biobased building materials. Depending on your assignment, you will, for example, test product ideas, develop new products or research new application possibilities.

For more information, send an e-mail to Marianna Coelho

Circular Economy

In the project Circular Economy you work on the challenge to make the HZ outside spaces more green and attractive, whilst applying materials that contribute to a circular economy. For example, you can make proposals for new planting, make the space suitable for studying, relaxing and meeting, or work in the food forest. You ensure that the required materials are circular and put forward ideas on how food and materials can be (re)used within HZ.

For more information, send an e-mail to Ingrid de Vries

Going Green

In the Going Green project, you and a team of students from various study programmes will work on greening outdoor premises and making them multi-functional. For example, you can give the outdoor premises an educational purpose in addition to the recreational, sports and play function. You and your team will conduct research, collaborating with researchers and professionals.

For more information, send an e-mail to Ingrid de Vries

Marine Biobased Chemistry

The Marine Biobased Chemistry research group uses chemical knowledge to investigate marine resources, for example to shape the food transition in Zeeland. Together with your project group, you can work on the applications of seaweed, delve into protein transition, or develop food packaging. There are also chemistry projects, for instance to analyse flavour and odour compounds. You will learn how to tackle complex research, design experiments, analyse data and present research results.

For more information, send an e-mail to Tanja Moerdijk


To conduct water quality research, the HZ has two self-steering sensor boats: HZenzor 1 and HZenzor 2. The two-metre-long boats are a platform full of measuring equipment. In the HZenzor project, you will improve navigation using waypoints. You will make and implement suggestions on mechatronics and programming. Together with a team of fellow students, you will extensively test the adjustments. In the future, the boats should be able to self-steer and take independent measurements of water quality.

For more information, send an e-mail to Willem Haak

Climate Adaptation

Together with the Resilient Deltas research group, you will work on projects that contribute to a climate-resilient living environment in the delta. The research focuses on climate adaptation and flood risk management. Various fields of expertise come together during the research project, including water management, risk analysis and spatial planning & design.

For more information, send an e-mail to Jasper van den Heuvel

Besides the possibility to follow the 15 credit or 30 credit minor, it is also possible to enroll for packages of smaller entities within the Design Thinking track. The possibilities are: 6, 10.5, 15, 21, 25.5 or 30 credits.

  • HZ Studio 1 - Design Thinking Track 15 ECTS - MI00029.1A
  • HZ Studio 1 - Design Thinking Track 10,5 ECTS - MI00029.1B
  • HZ Studio 1 - Design Thinking Track 6 ECTS - MI00029.1C
  • HZ Studio 2 - Design Thinking Track 15 ECTS - MI00029.2A*
  • HZ Studio 2 - Design Thinking Track 10 ECTS - MI00029.2B*
  • HZ Studio 2 - Design Thinking Track 6 ETCS - MI00029.2C*

* Participation of this package requires passing tests of MI00029.1A


Are you in need of 8 credits, you can choose for the package of 10.5 credits.

Are you in need of 23 credits, you can combine a package of 15 credits and 10,5 credits, which means you need to enroll for both course codes.

With this minor, you will learn the following:

  • You invest in getting to know and understand all associated stakeholders for the benefit of the output and process.
  • You contribute to a collaborative environment in which everybody feels at ease to share thoughts and opinions.
  • You can apply Design Thinking and share the output in a clear manner, or;
  • You conduct relevant research and collect and analyse data that are suitable for the required insights.
  • You take leadership in your own development. You give and receive feedback on your own functioning and experiment with different perspectives and worldviews.
  • You know how to collaborate with persons outside your own (scientific) domain, institute, culture or context.

This minor has no fixed timetable.

  • You are at the HZ Studio for at least 6 half days a week during the minor. This is a creative work space in the HZ Tower, with free coffee and tea.
  • For the applied research project track, it might be the case that for some time you have a workplace at the particular research group.
  • It is possible to obtain your credits during the same semester or spread over two semesters.

For the applied research track, we have numerous online sources and methodology books in our studio available. The following books are recommended for the design thinking track (you can borrow them from the HZ Studio library):

  • Lewrick, M., Link, P., & Leifer, L. (2020). The design thinking toolbox: A guide to mastering the most popular and valuable innovation methods. John Wiley & Sons.
  • Borges, C. C., & McNamee, S. (2022). Design thinking and social construction: a practical guide to innovation in research. BIS Publishers.

A variety of testing takes place, depending on the amount of credits you take. Tests for the full minor are:

  • Individual update. You share your plans and outcomes on your own chosen personal development ideas, ambitions and actions. In a vlog or blog you reflect on the entire period and development in The Garage.

  • Contribution portfolio. You create a portfolio with your log and proof of your leadership skills as well as your cooperation with others. In this, you also address boundary crossing competencies.

  • Project output and process. You share your project work such as reports, workshops, flyers or presentations, and of the process by means of interview reports and minutes. You also reflect on the process of Design Thinking and/or your research.

Practical information

This minor is open to students from all programmes at all universities of applied sciences.

You must have completed the propedeuse and 30 credits in the main phase.

This is an English language minor. When you follow the Applied Research track, some available research projects are in Dutch.

Semester 1

The minor runs from September 2024 to January/February 2025. You can apply from March 2024.

Semester 2

The minor runs from February 2025 to July 2025. You can apply from September 2024.

Do you study at the HZ? Then you can apply on this page. Do you study at another university of applied sciences? Then you can apply via Kies op Maat.

Jessica Borgs-Rongen

Office manager minor HZ Studio

Questions about this minor?

Do you have any questions? Or would you like to discuss whether this minor suits you? Feel free to contact Jessica Borgs-Rongen, office manager minor HZ Studio.

Mail Jessica

Register for this minor

HZ student

Are you studying at HZ and want to apply for this minor? Then click on the application button below. This refers you to Osiris. Choose the right minor code of your preference so you will enroll in the right course. Please note that you must choose 1 of the 2 tracks: the Applied Research Track or the Design Thinking track. After enrolling in the right track (Design Thinking or Applied Research) you should also make sure you’re enrolled for the according tests.

Have you chosen the Applied Research track? Then you have to send your preferred research topic to garage@hz.nl so they can help you with the matchmaking process.

Student from another Dutch university of applied sciences or student from our international partner universities

Are you studying at another Dutch university of applied sciences and would you like to take this minor at HZ? Then register via Kies op Maat.

If you have been selected by your home university to study one or two semesters at the HZ, you may start your application by registering through our online application procedure.

Please note that you must choose 1 of the 2 tracks: the Applied Research Track or the Design Thinking track. You submit your choice of track by registering for the tests belonging to the track of your choice. Have you chosen the Applied Research track? Then you can send your preferred research project to garage@hz.nl.

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