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28 Sep 2023

The design council announces Design for Planet festival programme 2023

The design council announces Design for Planet festival programme 2023

The Design Council announces the programme for the third edition of the award-winning Design for Planet Festival 2023. Under the theme COLLABORATE, the festival aims to mobilise the UK's powerful design community to unite efforts in addressing the climate crisis.

In support of COP 28, the hybrid event will take place on Tuesday 17 October and Wednesday 18 October 2023 at the Enterprise Centre, University of East Anglia in Norwich – one of the world's most sustainable buildings.

Guests will hear from some of the leading voices in sustainability and design today, across a series of online and in person events, seminars and keynotes, including design anthropologist, Dr Dori Tunstall, science communicator Asher Minns, illustrator and designer Stefanie Posavec, housing campaigner and television presenter Kwajo Tweneboa and many more.

The festival is free to attend for all designers, universities, students and businesses.

The Design for Planet Festival is the Design Council's flagship event, forming part of the Design for Planet mission: to galvanise the 1.97 million people working in design in the UK to design our way to a net zero world and beyond.

In partnership with AHRC and Innovate UK, this year’s festival theme COLLABORATE champions design innovation and advocacy in the face of the climate crisis as a collective act. The event brings together leading experts from the world of design, fashion, built environment, policy, media and education to empower an important cross-industry dialogue. Placing the planet at the heart of this conversation, the festival highlights the shared responsibility and power of collaboration ahead of the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference (COP 28) in the United Arab Emirates later this year.

Programme highlights include:

Tuesday 17th October

  • Lunchtime heroes (online): Fashion’s Next Models: Thrift, Rent, Repair Tiffanie Darke (Story Studios, Ex Harrods, The Times), Eve Kekeh (Bundlee)
  • Panel: Designing with communities Chair: Almira Lardizabal Hussain (GLA), Lucy Bowen (National College of Art & Design, Dublin), Hugo Jamson (Design Differently), Amahra Spence (YARD)
  • Panel: Next practice materials Chair - Alice Fisher (The Guardian), Edward Bulmer (Edward Bulmer paint), Shruti Grover (Pattern Project), Miriam Gutierrez (Colorifix), Rosalie McMillan (Smile Plastic) Adam McMillan (Smile Plastic)

Wednesday 18th October

  •  Keynote: Bas van Abel (Fairphone)
  • Panel: Designing for our future mobility needs Rosslyn Colderley (Sustrans), Siobhan Anderson (Tyre Collective), Nicole Agba (Innovate UK, ex Lotus, Ford), Hannah Barnham-Brown (Inclusion specialist)
  • In Conversation: Climate justice through housing design: Pooja Agrawal (Public Practice) Kwajo Tweneboa
  • Panel: Designing our future food systems Chair - Kevin Burch (BBC), Merve Anil (TBC), Carolina Kyvic (WNWN Food Labs), Muntons TBC, Alicia Miller (Food Manifesto Bwyd)

You can access the full programme HERE.

Design for Planet Festival 2023 curatorial panel includes, Cat Drew, Chief Design Officer, Design Council, Natasha Trotman, Design Council Expert, Inclusion, Alice Fisher, Design Journalist at The Guardian, Shawn Adams, Co-Founder of Poor Collective and Fiona Lettice, Research and Innovation, University of East Anglia.

The festival will feature over 60 cross-industry experts from many diverse disciplines of sustainability and design, from fashion and built environment to energy, mobility, inclusivity, policy, media, education. Keynote speakers include Bas Van Abel, Founder of Fairphone, Cedrine Streit, Global Strategy Lead at Visa, Dr Dori Tunstall, Dean of the Faculty of Design at Ontario College of Art and Design University, Asher Minns, Science Communicator at Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, Stefanie Posavec, Designer, Artist and Author, Kwajo Tweneboa, Housing Campaigner and Television Presenter, Zoe Robinson, Producer at Headlong Theatre, Helen McGowan, Production Director at TOAST, Tiffanie Darke Director of Story Futures at Story Studios, Baroness Helene Hayman, Co-Chair at Peers for the Planet, Stefanie Posavec, illustrator and designer of ‘The Climate Book’ by Greta Thunberg, Rosslyn Colderley, England North Director of Sustrans, housing campaigner and television presenter Kwajo Tweneboa, Simon Carroll, Director of Temple Design Studio, Dr Ehab Sayed, Founder and Chief Evolution Officer at Biohm and Rosie Murphy, Architects Climate Action Network.

Minnie Moll, Chief Executive, the Design Council said:

”This will be our third year of curating the sustainable design event of the year; discovering what design needs to do to solve the greatest challenge of our time. We will bring together designers, businesses, and policy makers to connect, inspire and help make this year's theme of COLLABORATE a reality.

The theme COLLABORATE is an opportunity to champion the ways in which design happens with others, has impact at scale with multiple actors in the room, and is more meaningful when we do it together.”

Professor John Gordon, Academic Lead, Creative University of East Anglia said:

“UEA is delighted to host the Design Council’s Design for Planet festival, which promises an exciting programme of events and debates exploring and supporting the UK design industry’s role in a sustainable, climate-first future. As host, our university is superbly positioned to contribute: our strategic research themes ClimateUEA and CreativeUEA link researchers and partners from across disciplines, exploring new areas of research, learning, action and impact. We are also home to Brandland, which champions Norfolk’s rich brand heritage and sustainable innovation.

“The Enterprise Centre on our campus is a fitting location for this conversation. As one of the greenest buildings in Europe, it is a shining example of how to design for the planet. Innovations by the thriving creative and cultural industries of Norwich and the Eastern region demonstrate how it is possible link place and communities to realise an ethos of sustainability, an ethos that connects local and global outlooks. We expect that the festival will be an inspiring call for action for our students and researchers, and for artists, designers, businesses and individuals.”

Cat Drew, Chief Design Officer of the Design Council and Design for Planet Festival Curator said:

“Collaboration is essential if we are going to design for planet. The climate crisis is too big for anyone to solve on their own. We need to collaborate with citizens and consumers to co-design solutions that people will actually use. We need to collaborate with people up and down the supply chain to ensure materials can be re-used and re-used. We need to collaborate with nature, designing for it and with it. We need to collaborate with other businesses, sharing knowledge so we can move further faster together.”

Madeleine Michell, Communications Manager, TOAST said:

“It is becoming increasingly important that ideas of sustainability and circularity are put at the heart of design. TOAST are guided by timeless design and continuously explore resourceful ways to keep our garments in use for longer. We are delighted to be joining with other designers from all disciplines to address how we can tackle the climate crisis together.”

Design for Planet 2023 will run from 17-18 October at the Enterprise Centre, University of East Anglia. Tickets for this hybrid event are free to book on the Design Council website.