The DesignSingapore Council is the national agency for design, guided by the vision to make Singapore an innovation-driven economy and a loveable city by design, by the year 2025. It is a subsidiary of the Singapore Economic Development Board.
The Council also serves as the City of Design Office for Singapore, which was designated a UNESCO Creative City of Design (COD) in 2015.
As a City of Design, we are committed to promote and develop the design industry, nurture design talent, enable businesses to innovate through design, make design education and activities accessible so that everyone can appreciate and use design, as well as promote the Singapore Design brand globally.
Global companies are recognising Singapore as an attractive living lab for design and innovation. Last year, Johnson & Johnson opened its first design lab outside of the US in Singapore, while Huawei set up its Cloud & AI Innovation Lab this year.
The Council advocates the business value of design by reaching out to senior business executives and innovation leaders via design thinking workshops, seminars and thought leadership platforms like the FortuneBrainstorm Design (25-26 March 2020). This is the first global conference to explore the nexus between business, design and the public sector.
To respond to the growing demand for transdisciplinary designers and a creative workforce, the Council set up a Design Education Review Committee to strengthen and embed design in higher education.
The Council helps design entrepreneurs grow globally with its Business of Design programme. It matches designers to veteran in-market consultants who guide them in accessing key markets. Other efforts to grow a global audience for the Singapore Design brand include profiling talent at platforms like Milan Design Weekand Venice Biennale International Architecture Exhibition 2020.
On the home front, the Council oversees the programming of the National Design Centre (NDC) to promote the appreciation of design. It collaborates with international counterparts to co-present feature exhibitions as part of cultural exchanges. Similarly, the Council’s flagship Singapore Design Week (SDW), one of Asia’s premier design festivals, engages the public with delightful activities that demonstrate the value of design. SDW will return in 2021, aiming to garner greater international participation and further engagement with local creatives and businesses.
To underscore the significance of design in our lives, the Council’s President*s Design Award (P*DA) now has an added emphasis on outcome-based design impact, on top of its criterion of excellence in design craftsmanship. The recipients for the 2020 P*DA will be announced in mid-2020.