World Design Forum platform launched
A new platform was launched at the end of the fourth edition of the World Design Forum (WDF) in Eindhoven last Friday. The platform gives strategists and designers a forum for the coming year to enable them to develop new insights and sector-transcending alliances.
Several cases during the World Design Forum emphasised the added value of close collaboration between the two disciplines in order to be able to meet the challenges inherent in the Essential Economy. For example, strategists and designers are working side by side in the Social Innovation Lab in Kent to remove the stigma associated with dementia, starting with young people. This resulted in an appealing animation video designed to increase acceptance of dementia. Another British contribution was the development of gov.uk, a single centralised website for the government, created with the needs of users in mind. Strategists and designers also used the wishes of users as the basis for their solution in a third project, the identification of the boarding and alighting behaviour of train passengers: an LED screen with an app containing information about the layout of available seats on incoming trains. A fourth contribution sketched the fascinating potential of additive manufacturing. Ten players are working in the so-called AddLab in Eindhoven to accelerate this development.
The WDF was attended by directors from various national and international design weeks: Silke Claus (Munich), Jovan Jelovac (Belgrade), Kari Korkman (Helsinki) and Hans Robertus (former director Eindhoven), who discussed trends in their countries. The name change of the design week in Munich to Creative Business Week illustrated the more business-like approach referred to in their talks. At the conclusion of the WDF 2013, strategists and designers, together with the problem owners, focused on two current issues: decentralisation of local government and creating customer loyalty among Rabobank members now that digitisation is limiting the number of physical contacts.
A bulletin board was set up during the WDF offering participants an opportunity to offer or look for expertise and to submit issues for consideration. An initial impetus for creating alliances and the focus of the new WDF platform: retaining creative and business enthusiasm until the next WDF edition. ‘We are in the process of creating a trial site for alliances where strategists and designers can go to practice. A public space for starting up experiments, whereby we fulfil a facilitating role,’ says Maarten Königs on behalf of the WDF.
The WDF 2013 was organised by Berenschot and the Holland Branding Group in collaboration with the World Design Forum Foundation.