Area 320 Forum - 2020


Area 320 Forum 2020


About Area 320 Forum

The inaugural Area 320 Forum, ISHCMC’s social entrepreneurship platform for Secondary students, was a true celebration of innovation and design. The concept of Area 320 itself, came from the innovations of student-teacher collaboration. Over the past 18 months, students have been working up to this moment to showcase their projects.


Judges of the Forum used several criteria to assess the projects:

  • Social Entrepreneurship Factor
  • Impact Potential
  • Scalability
  • Originality
  • Monetization Potential

The Projects

Communal Wardrobe

Using the idiom of “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure”, this project is constructed on a sharing economy model for reducing waste due to fast fashion whilst supporting local communities. In its simplest form, the resources needed are a box and an accessible location. There are additional complexities such as security, protection from the weather, durability that are all being tested and prototyped at the ISHCMC Design Technology and Innovation Center.

The concept is multi-faceted, each with their own benefit. By rolling-out in four stages; first within the ISHCMC community through to expansion on a city-wide and then global level, this group of students aim to change consumer buying behaviors and attitudes towards fashion. Making clothes available to be recycled and reused will address a need within parts of society, reduce the impact on the natural environment and offer a financial lifeline to those who cannot afford to buy new.

Cashless School Payment System

It is something many of us can relate to back to our own schooldays: forgetting your lunch money. But in the age of COVID-19, there are also safety concerns of handling cash. Many countries around the world already have in place cashless payment options, and many are now racing to facilitate this method.

In a school environment, it is noted students may not eat lunch due to losing/forgetting money, avoiding long queues and the general inconvenience of holding cash. A solution, put forward by this team of designers, is to produce a cashless system using barcode technology. This will prepare students by giving them real-world experiences; enhancing hygiene protocols; increase autonomy and offer a rewards scheme for frequent usage. By capitalizing on exciting technologies, the cards can be ‘topped-up’ with credit online and will be produced in-house.

Flood-safe Housing

With a deeply personal connection to flooding, the designer aims to solve the plight that much of the population suffers within Central Vietnam. It is a system that functions as a typical communal house, and when the local area floods, the house is converted into a flotation platform through a buoyancy system to protect the space from damages caused by natural disasters.

At present, there are not many houses or communities that have robust flood protection in place, as most prioritize measures solely focusing on keeping the inhabitants safe. This concept aims to address this by reducing the financial costs of repairing houses whenever natural disasters may occur.

Digital Wellness Device (Winner)

There is comprehensive research evidencing growth in the Health and Wellbeing market driven by the increased importance individuals are now placing on achieving balance and happiness in their lives. In 2012, 4.1% of adults in North America participated in some form of Wellbeing activity. That has increased to 14.9% in 2017 investing in Healthy and Wellbeing produces or services.

Many of which rely on using mobile phones, laptop devices, websites and apps whilst this project produces a free-standing aid that is intuitive to the user’s preferences. The more it is used, the more it learns. Combining sound relaxation and light technology to achieve mindfulness, sessions can be tracked through a mobile app to determine the focus of the next mindfulness session. The device uses advanced technologies to record and produce logging sequences with different objectives such as reducing stress and anxiety, balancing emotions and understanding yourself.

The device will be portable so it can be used anywhere at the user’s convenience. It will be produced by 3D printer using recycled materials.


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