Singapore Design Week 2019 Banner Image

Singapore Design Week 2019

Monday, Mar 4, 2019 - Sunday, Mar 17, 2019
Middle Road, National Design Centre, Singapore 111 Middle Road, Singapore, , Singapore

4 March 2019 | 8PM | National Design Centre

Into its 6th edition, Singapore Design Week (SDW) 2019 will run from 4 to 17 March 2019. As one of Asia’s premier design festivals, SDW showcases Singapore’s thought leadership in design, connects design talents and businesses, and engages the community through delightful activities that demonstrate the value of design.

UNESCO Cities of Design – Singapore Design Week Public Forum
Designing for IMPACT

8th March 2019 | 8:30AM - 6:30PM | National Design Centre, Level 2 - Auditorium
Registration Starts 8:30AM

Design is no longer about aesthetics, but developing creative solutions to complex problems. Today, businesses, governments and educators alike turn to design approaches to add value for their stakeholders in an increasingly competitive global economy, and solve some of the planet’s biggest problems with a design perspective. The design community has itself followed suit in expanding its purview, stepping out to work across disciplines and beyond fields of design to work with systems, processes, organisations, and even services.

In this Public Forum, representatives from the 31 UNESCO Creative Cities of Design, including Singapore, share their experiences with designing for impact in the fields of education, policy, business and communication.

Expected attendees:
·       Policy makers
·       Academia and think-tanks
·       Educators and students
·       Industry representatives – design industry associations, design businesses, design clients, designers, design scholars

Participants can expect:
·       Innovative models, practices and ideas
·       Stories and case studies of organisational transformation from the local to the global
·       Best practices and perspectives from industry, government and educators
·       Opportunities for networking, collaboration and discourse 

EDUCATION PANEL | 9:10AM (80mins)

As non-design industries and governments look to design to innovate and transform their businesses, solve complex societal problems, and to deliver the best possible experience for end-users, designers now have to be a strategist, a communicator, a facilitator, a co-creator, a trans-disciplinary collaborator and more.

How has design education changed to adapt to changing needs? What does it mean to be trained as a designer? How can a design approach change what we think about educational environments and practitioners?

Possible Topics:
·       New curriculums for design education
·       Re-skilling and deep-skilling of design practitioners
·       Innovative learning tools, solutions and environments

POLICY PANEL | 11AM (80mins)

Policymakers adopting design approaches seek to place the ’user’ at the heart of their solutions, and employ adaptive processes that can move with changing circumstances, yet create practical everyday solutions.

When designing for impact, who do we design for and how do we scope problems? Do we design for a specific few, a broader group, or society at large? How do we design to re-connect policies and services to everyday problems that citizens face?

Possible Topics:
·       Policy applications of design thinking
·       Public participation for impact
·       User-centric design in policy practice


Good design is good strategy. Companies, communities and economies are using design thinking to raise productivity, unlock new opportunities for growth, and improve the quality of everyday life. As the definition of design expands to include disciplines such as interaction, experience and service design, designers and design teams maintain holistic approaches yet a focus on individual behaviour and input. Beyond responding to a design brief, designers today are responsible for defining the problem they should be addressing.

How have companies used design to catalyse innovation and competitiveness? How can designers rethink their roles in companies, teams and projects? How can businesses reorganise to optimise ideation and innovation? What do designers think is good business?

Possible Topics:
·       R&D applications: idea incubation and design approaches
·       Disruptive ideas and business models
·       Design services as tool for business innovation and transformation


The boundaries between products, services and experiences are increasingly blurred. Seamless experiences are created by visualising user scenarios, defining how information is encountered, and testing concepts with real users. As companies work towards better understandings of real world behaviour, and the optimisation of technology, communications is crucial to how customers and stakeholders encounter and experience the world.

How can complicated processes transform into engaging, enjoyable, yet effortless experiences? How can data be used to increase the quality of life? Where and how can emotions come into play?

Possible Topics:
·       Co-creation experiences
·       Place-making and activation
·       Prototyping and experimentation
·       Improving processes for societal gain