The CSD isn’t perfect but it’s the best for UK design

It is disappointing to see past presidents of the Chartered Society of Designers airing their dissatisfaction with the CSD in Design Week, especially as there has been opportunities and mechanisms within the CSD that do not appear to have been used.

I have supported the CSD all my working life as I have always believed that designers are (or should be) professionals, should act in a manner becoming that status and should be represented by a professional body.

In turn, the design professional has a responsibility to support their representative organisation. I know of no other organisation that has supported the designer for a longer period of time than the CSD (70 years for the uninitiated). We all have a debt to the CSD for representing us in the darker days when ‘design’ was just a six-letter word.

If we all got behind and inside the CSD instead of splitting into disparate directions we would all be better off for it. (I am not convinced the Design Business Association offers value for money and it represents business rather than the designer.

Just because we don’t agree or can’t get our own way, it’s not going to change things for the better. Perhaps if past presidents had represented the CSD membership more readily changes might have been made earlier, but you can’t complain afterwards.

Let’s face it, the fact is, everything could be improved, wherever you look in life. Just as Teddy Roosevelt said: ‘The credit goes to those that are actively involved and doing their best, not those sat on the touchlines criticising’.

Join the CSD and change it. Past presidents may have tried and failed, no one is criticising them for their efforts, and some of them wish they hadn’t departed but had soldiered on. However, they made their decision and left the rest of us to it.

Well, I for one, have, and am prepared to support the organisation and will continue to do so regardless of personal beliefs or conflicts with those of the CSD.

I will try and continue to make changes for the good of the design professions, and

in particular those students who hope to be represented by a professional body in the future. (Where was everyone else when we needed them, or is that a bandwagon that I see? Oh no, it’s a pram and some toys.)

Geoff Gradwell

Gradwell Corporate Design

geoffgradwell@talk21.com

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