New Design Council initiative to tackle public health

The organisation’s ongoing Design in the Public Sector programme will focus on addressing lifestyle issues such as smoking through prevention methods as part of a 16-week course.

Sheffield Children’s Hospital designs by Morag Myerscough © Jill Tate

The Design Council is asking local authorities across the UK to take part in a new programme focusing on public health challenges.

The 16-week programme will look at how public health can benefit from “design thinking”, particularly when it comes to lifestyle-related issues such as poor diet, smoking and binge drinking.

The organisation is targeting public health professionals and other people working within the health sector. Applicants will be matched with design experts, who will focus on highlighting prevention methods for different public health challenges.

The initiative is the latest iteration of the Design Council’s Design in the Public Sector programme, which is run in partnership with the Local Government Association (LGA).

Leeds and London

It was launched by the Design Council in 2014, with the aim of exposing local public services to new strategic design skills in order to deal with social problems more efficiently.

Previous iterations have seen homelessness tackled in Redbridge, North London and increased support for tenants in the private rental sector in Hackney, East London.

Taking place in the autumn, the public health initiative will first be delivered in Leeds, followed by London.

The deadline for submissions for local authorities is 20 September for the Leeds course, and 29 November for the one in London.

For more information, visit the Design Council’s site.

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