An open space for ideas

The Design Engineering Collaborative aims to tap into Berkeley's vast human resource pool through the implementation of an open design center. Within the framework of a highly creative approach to innovation and design, the collaborative serves as a launch pad for ideas and creativity outside of the everyday classroom environment.

Open Space

About DEC


In July 2012, two members of DEC's founding team had the opportunity to take a tour of America's leading engineering design firm, IDEO, with one of its founders, Dennis Boyle. The spirit of innovation and creativity in such a highly technical environment felt like an oasis in comparison to the traditional classroom/office approaches to education and problem solving. In 2005, Stanford founded their design institute, called the d.school, headed by IDEO co-founder, David Kelley. Their incredibly successful program has revamped the teaching paradigm within their university and begun to spread to schools and businesses across the nation. So we thought, "It seems wrong that a private university like Stanford can build such a space and blossom when a public university such as UC Berkeley may not be able to fit it into the budget". The recipe for success? Simple: create a space that breeds collaboration and expression, teach cutting-edge approaches to innovation and design, and allow the natural talent of the students to flourish wildly. We knew this could be done here at Cal, and made it our mission to implement the program.

The Goal

The DEC has designed and facilitates a space which promotes forward thinking, innovation, and creativity in support of hands-on design, allows people to explore topics that they are curious or passionate about, and provides a platform through which to teach innovative processes in design and engineering. We want to connect with the entire university, by providing a mind nurturing space where professors can hold classes (especially useful for design-centered courses), student groups can meet and collaborate effectively, and interested individuals can see their creative brilliance spring to the surface. The Collaborative is a hub for innovation, creating a framework that intrinsically brings creative, intelligent, talented people together. Thriving on direct collaboration and diverse skill-sets, we do stuff.


The Design Engineering Collaborative is officially affiliated with the Department of Mechanical Engineering at UC Berkeley, and supported by the College of Engineering and the Engineering Student Council along with many other campus organizations which have rallied to the movement. Our founding team has established ties with IDEO, Synapse, the National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS), Stormboard, and Stanford University's d.school.


Grant Buster

Adam Eastman

Jared Karp

Sam Kirschner

Nicolai Doreng-Stearns

Sarah Carey

TJ Cycyota

Rodrigo Ochigame

Aneesh Prasad

Spencer Hitchcock

What we do

DEC members meet Wednesdays at 8PM in the Bridges Room in the Bechtel Engineering Center to get together and work on projects. The club also sometimes puts on events like workshops and specially designated project work-days.

Team Up

DEC is the student hub for engineering design. Interdisciplinary projects launch here, every day. Right place for the right time.

Gear Up

From Nerf to NMOS, DEC has what you need. We build things. Grab & go.

Open doors

From campus events to industry meet-and-greets, DEC's goal is to get you where you want to be.


The Bridges Room on UC Berkeley's campus has been transformed into the Student Hub for Engineering and Design (The SHED) - an ideal collaboration zone, a center for people to meet, think, share ideas, and create. In November 2012, the space opened for innovators. We hold weekly brainstormers every Wednesday at 8pm in the SHED. Everyone is invited to participate in our ideation sessions.

Application to Join DEC

The Design Engineering Collaborative is now accepting applications for new membership. Any member of the UC Berkeley community has the opportunity to join this collaborative and engage with any projects they find interesting. In addition to working on their own projects, all members have the opportunity to join any other member's project group.

Basic Information


1. As a member of DEC, you are not allowed to use your title as a member for use on any applications or outside organizations. Only actions that you take while working with DEC may be put on your resumes. Given that, what is it that you look to get from your experience with us, and what projects do you want to pursue with the collaborative? If you do not have a specific project in mind, what do you think you could bring to the table?

2. People often think of solutions to problems they encounter in the real world (solutions to things that "bug" them). Those interested in design take note of these solutions and problems and create "bug lists" based on these interactions with the world. Please spend a couple days making your own bug list, and jot down a couple ideas below.

3. Greenhouse - a place where the elements are just right to foster the growth of good ideas. Our space currently has whiteboards, chairs and couches, sticky notes, pens, and prototyping materials. There is an annual membership fee of $20, which helps sustain the organization on a small scale, and demonstrates the vested interest of all of our members. Where would you like to see this money go? What would want to add to the room to help your design experience? Why? Don't hold back; this could be anything from computers to espresso machines.

4. The Design Engineering Collaborative requires creativity and a novel perspective in approaching challenges and new situations. Imagine you have an infinite amount of Play-Doh in every single color, and an hour to do anything you want. What would you do?

Contact DEC

Need to talk to a DEC admin? The admin team with their respective positions and contact information is listed below. For general questions, please send an email to decollab@ocf.berkeley.edu.

Grant Buster


grant.buster [AT] gmail.com

Francisco Peralta

Co-Vice President

fperalta [AT] berkeley.edu

Ethan Anderson

Co-Vice President

ethanca [AT] berkeley.edu

Jared Karp

Space Captain

jaredkarp10 [AT] gmail.com