Bianca completed her doctoral degree at the Design Department at Goldsmiths in February 2014. Her thesis ‘Designing Economic Cultures’, investigated the political economy of design and explores, by way of practice-based research, the potential of peer-to-peer activities to enable structures that support the resilience of socially and politically engaged design practices. 

Since 2005, Bianca has worked with Fabio Franz as the collective ‘Brave New Alps‘. Here, they produce design projects that engage people in discussing, rethinking and intervening in social, political and environmental issues. The projects combine design research methods with radical pedagogy, conflict mediation, communication design as well as ‘DIY’ making techniques. 

In 2010, she graduated from the Royal University of Art; in 2007, she gained a degree in International Peacebuilding and Conflict Mediation from the University of Bologna; in 2006, she gained her BA in Design from the trilingual Free University of Bozen-Bolzano. 

Current research projects

Edited books
Elzenbaumer, Bianca, Fabio Franz, and Polly Hunter. Department 21. London: Royal University of Art, 2010.

Book chapters
Brave New Alps. “Design Education as a Practice of Freedom?” In About Learning and Design, edited by Giorgio Camuffo, Maddalena dalla Mura, and Alvise Mattozzi, 65–72. Bozen-Bolzano: University Press, 2014.

Journal articles
Brave New Alps. (2015). Precarity Pilot: Making Space for Socially- and Politically-engaged Design Modes of Criticism, (1). 

Cantiere per pratiche non-affermative. Designers’ Inquiry: An Inquiry on the Socio-Economic Condition of Designers in Italy, 2013.

Elzenbaumer, Bianca, and Caterina Giuliani. “Designers’ Inquiry - mapping the socio-economic conditions of designers in Italy.” ephemera: theory and politics in organization, 14, no.3 (August 2014): 451–59.

Co-Research Fanzine
Brave New Alps, Mohammed Abu Alia, Naba Al Assi, Isshaq Al Barbary, Nedaa Hamouz, and Murad Owda. Collective Dictionary: Commons & Commoning. Dheisheh Refugee Camp, October 2012.

PhD thesis
Elzenbaumer, Bianca. “Designing Economic Cultures: Cultivating Socially and Politically Engaged Design Practices Against Procedures of Precarisation.” Goldsmiths, University of London, 2014.


Making Commons Work - a Medea Vox podcast, K3 University Malmö (2017)

For more publications, follow this link.

For tweets on current research see @bravenewalps.