Takeaways from the Design Capital Business Day on 16 July

Neil Shewan 17.07.2009

First, congratulations to Design Victoria for an excellent day. Creating discussions about bringing together business outcomes and design solutions is critical to Australia’s future. Below are some of my takeaways from the day:

On sustainability…

_ there is a huge opportunity to move on from legacy technology (in fuel, media, transport, engineering, architecture) of the past, and design using the latest technologies. Our lives will be better for it!

_ Either be pushed, or be a leader in this area – it is going to happen anyway.

_ There are SO many positive opportunities from embracing sustainability (new jobs, products, lifestyles, innovation)

_ “We have to redesign the way we do everything”, Rupert Posner, The Climate Group.

_ TANK needs to move to the next level of sustainability internally – in everything we do.

_ The move to sustainability is a journey for each business and individual.

On Design…

_ “Free ideas” from the web generate opportunities and threats for creative thinking. Peter Williams of Deloitte Digital spoke of using the world as your idea generator. In talking to Peter after his presentation I questioned what value is placed on ideas. His opinion was that that ideas are “worth nothing”, and the value comes from the curating, facilitation and execution. This raises interesting questions on who owns the idea, the quality of ideas, and intellectual property. And, as we all know, an appropriate design solution comes from the process of design rather than just an idea.

_ I was inspired by the design process and nurturing of design within engineering firm Arup. Also with their virtualisation, testing of a project in 6D (3D model, + time + cost + carbon footprint), and experience immersion.

_ I was heartened to see how Qantas is embracing design, and seeing the benefits. Not being a first class traveller, I hope to see some of the design focus moving through to business and economy travelers.

_ Vince Pirrello from Woods Bagot spoke about their design process. Loved the focus on discovering superior solutions, while also considering the bottom line. So critical for producing outstanding work.

_ The design led outcomes for Ronstan and The Australian Turntable Company were amazing. Two firms that focused on design, and came to realise it is the reason for their success. Some great quotes from Alistair Murray of Ronstan “We realised we had to make obsolete our own products, else someone else would”, and “design is our future”.

On Innovation…

_ The minerals boom has made Australia lazy. As a country we have no mantra from the government, focusing us on innovation. In recent times other countries have realised this: UK “Innovation Nation”, USA “Rise above gathering storm” and Canada “Benchmarking against global best”. What is our mantra?

_ I was horrified to see that Australia ranked at the bottom or towards the bottom of the scale on all measurements of perceived innovation and design collaboration. We need to increase innovation and design thinking by a factor of 10 (not just 2 or 3) to get onto the map.

On Digital…

_ Don’t reinvent social media – rather, integrate existing online services into your own site.
_ Twitter is a great business tool: Several people were Twittering from the event and I ended up making some great new contacts through it.
_ Don’t do a costly, detailed business plan for a web project. Have a broad idea, get it out there, be prepared for it to fail, learn from it, then refine and enhance over time.

On Design Victoria…

_ Design Victoria’s work in starting the design discussion is critical. As a design industry we must support them and do our part in fostering a design led Australian economy.

_ Thank you Design Victoria for such an enjoyable and stimulating day.


Categories: Branding, Graphic design, Inspirational, Strategy, TANK

2 Responses to “Takeaways from the Design Capital Business Day on 16 July”

  1. [...] More Williams summed up his core themes on the Deloitte Digital Blog. View Neil Shewan from Tank Studio’s response to Design Capital. [...]

  2. Thank you for tale!

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