EC seeks public consultation on design document

The European Commission is seeking public consultation on its Staff Working Document on Design as a Tool for Innovation.

The document looks at the rationale for making design an integral part of European innovation policy, and follows lobbying from the Bureau of European Design Associations.

Beda representatives met EC vice-president Günter Verheugen in October 2007, after former Beda president Michael Thomson had been pressing for a united European design strategy in the face of Asian competition.

Thomson, founder and director of Design Connect, who now heads up Beda’s design policy team, says, ‘[The working document] is a potential precursor to a communication, where the EC sets out policy action.’

He adds that it is important to raise the profile of design in EC member states ahead of the next EC structural funding negotiation in 2013.

Thomson stepped down as Beda president in March, to be replaced by Jan R Stavik, the managing director of the Norwegian Design Council. Design Business Association chief executive Deborah Dawton was elected as vice-president.

The public consultation is open until 26 June.


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  • Ian McLaren November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    There is demonstrable evidence that a concerted design policy can have positive economic benefits to both the public and private sectors. The British Government is to be congratulated on fostering the accumulation of this convincing material, which is the more significant because it is based upon concrete economic data.

  • John Tregaskes November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    Product or/and service Innovation without design is pointless. As Business Adviser – Innovation I interact with 100+ SME clients over a year.

    A member of my team once described design as ‘The interface between a product or service and the customer’.

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