Thursday, November 18, 2010

Petition Design for Innovation in Wales is accepted by the National Assembly's Petitions Committee

Thanks for all of your support in signing the Petition Design for Innovation in Wales. The petition closed on Friday 12th November with 369 signatures.

On the 16th November it was reviewed and accepted by the National Assembly's Petitions Committee. As result, the petition was referred to the Deputy Minister for Science, Innovation and Skills Lesley Griffiths AM for her view about further action.

The focus of the petition was also described as ‘interesting’ by Veronica German AM, who also proposed a second action to establish who else in the Welsh Assembly could address the issues raised in relation to ‘social enterprise and new ways to deliver public services’.   
On the 17th November, the Design Wales team met with Andrew Rt Davies AM, member of the Petitions Committee, to reinforce our recommendations and to discuss how we can ensure the momentum we have created can be sustained and lead to a greater commitment to design by the Welsh Assembly. (photo by Darragh Murphy)

Design Wales wants to raise the profile of design ahead of next May’s elections and ultimately aims to see the assembly members form a cross-party group for design and innovation in Wales.

We would like to thank once again all the endorsers of the Manifesto and individuals who have signed the petition. The manifesto would not have been possible without the SEE project, a network of 11 European partners, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the INTERREG IVC programme.

To learn more and to download the Manifesto ‘Design for Innovation in Wales: Industry, Services & Society’, visit:

Monday, November 8, 2010

4th design policy workshop takes place in Poland

On the 4th and 5th November Design Wales took part in the latest thematic workshop involving the 11 SEE Project partners and their regional government representatives in Cieszyn in Southern Poland.

Opening address by Polish MEP Jan Olbrycht.

Hosted by the Silesian Castle of Art & Enterprise the theme was “Bringing innovative ideas to the market more quickly” and combined presentations from leading European innovation programmes as well as hands-on workshop sessions for the partners and their government representatives.

SEEProject steering group meeting.

Facilitated by Alexander Grots of Gravity Europe (Germany) the presentations of current design/innovation intervention programmes included; Jonathan Ball, Design Council (UK); Sergey Dmitriev, Sea Xray AS (Norway) and Sami Heikkinemi, Tekes (Finland). The first day concluded with a presentation by Aron Losonczi, founder of the company Litracon (Hungary) who have brought an innovative and award winning product to market in the form of concrete that allows light to travel through it via thousands of fibre optic cables or plastic rods moulded into to it.

Litracon - see-through concrete

The second day of workshops saw the partners unfolding in some detail various case studies of how design has played a role in bringing innovations to market, the development process that might have been followed and the part that government intervention can play in possibly improving this.

The workshop sessions taking place in the old castle stables.

The key output of the workshop will be a policy guideline booklet intended to inform policy makers but available to all via the SEEProject website early next year. SEE is co-financed by ERDF through the INTERREG IVC programme.