Practical plan for Design Council

The design community is one of three sectors to be addressed by the Design Council, which has revealed its long-awaited plan to Design Week.

The council’s priorities are to strengthen design’s infrastructure through training, to build representation between design and outside parties and to enhance design education. It also aims to boost design’s links with business disciplines within education and mount a campaign to engage the public.

‘The design sector is a major contributor to economic and social development,’ says Design Council chief executive David Kester. He highlights science and technology as opportunities for design to commercialise world-leading innovation.

Entitled The Practical Power of Design, the plan also identifies the business community and public services as potential areas for active intervention.

The council will run three-to-five-year ‘design campaigns’ in all three areas, under director of design and innovation Richard Eisermann. These will focus on technology, manufacturing, skills and learning environments, with sustainability, partnerships and demonstrating international best practice running throughout. The format will encompass R&D, the provision of information and support and efforts to encourage public engagement.

The campaigns will be run in collaboration with external bodies such as the Engineering Employers Association and passed on for implementation by them once models have been agreed.

Kester admits many of the new initiatives build on existing council activities. But, he explains, while the plan ‘doesn’t change the focus, it gives [the council] new delivery mechanisms and a campaigning profile’.

Deputy chief executive Harry Rich will continue his role with business, Hilary Cottam becomes director of R&D, Toby Scott is director of planning and Ruth Hasnip media director.

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