Starting in 2021, the event formerly known as World Design Day is now being celebrated as International Design Day (IDD) is an opportunity to recognize the value of design and its capacity for change in the world—and to celebrate the birthday of ICoD!
The goal of IDD is to challenge designers to reflect deeply on the well-being of people within their local environments, and to find innovative solutions to local needs by using design as a vehicle to honor diversity, transcend borders, and improve quality of life. Marking the anniversary of ICoD’s establishment on 27 April 1963, participants worldwide are invited to gather, innovate, and live out a moment of design by organizing public events and initiatives.
The theme of International Design Day 2021 is 'Design for Each and All'. The collective human family is made up of many different, intersecting types of people. How ‘each and all’ humans encounter the designed world depends on varying degrees of equitable access to certain material realities, spaces, and experiences. The designs that designers create can bring joy, spread information, promote education, grant access to healthcare, and provide knowledge and well-being. It is a fundamental part of the designer’s job to understand how the interplay of social, economic, environmental, technological and geographic factors may grant or block fair access in certain contexts—and to find new ways to let more people ‘in’.
“All people deserve to live in a well-designed world”. Living well and flourishing, supported by objects, places and systems designed to support and encourage this, is something every being should be able to access. The concept of ‘universal experience’ is more often than not, inadequate for most. Designers—whether they are aware of it or not—not only provide improvements to life situations but also often control access these benefits. Design for Each and All is about noticing all the parts present, giving care and attention to a broad range of human variation, relations and environments. More and more, things like family bonds, status, income, whether a person is able-bodied or not, whether they live in the global North or South, shape an ever-changeable design journey. As part this transformative designing process, there are some guiding questions that might lead to more design for each and all:
• How can design shape how people live well and flourish?
• Who is/are ‘each and all’ and what is the context?
• How do I think about ‘just’ and ‘fair’ access in design?
• How does design build a better—more inclusive, fairer— world?
WDD 2021 ACTIONS
Here are some kickstart ideas:
01 For Designers: Discuss and share ideas on social media
We encourage you to post about issues relating to the theme on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram), including how design grants and prohibits 'access', how the design process can better consider 'each and every one' including marginalized groups and non-traditional targets, how designed environments, designed objects or design communications might not be adequate for parts of their intended user groups are forgotten. Share with us your historical tidbits, or inspiring stories, the advocacy work of designers that have or are inspiring you. Post and tag us so that we can see and share your stories. Posts can include: personal stories, historical information, inspiring anecdotes, issues in the headlines that highlight the need for professionalism in design, forgotten figures in design history and their contributions. Please note that the use of the ICoD logo is not permitted without the approval of ICoD.
Here’s how to submit:
Please note that only posts that follow the IDD2021 Design for Each and All theme will be shared.
02 For organisations: Virtual Events around the theme
The 2021 theme has many sub-themes that could be of interest for design organisations to explore. These could include:
— diversity in design teams and how that improves outcomes
— accessibility in design
— how design controls access to services, spaces,
— hostile design
— the effects of geo-political factors on design
— the effects of socio-economic factors on the suitability of design solutions
— groups that are excluded or omitted from user-research
— health care effects of exclusionary design
— much more…
We encourage our Members and other design organisations to create digital events (Instagram live interviews, on-line conferences or talks, Zoom gatherings or anything else you can come up with on the theme.