It’s not always necessary to reinvent the wheel in order to build a better one, and while some challenges will need to have a whole new framework of innovation and technology to overcome, some of those challenges can be met by ideas that already exist.
Acknowledging that solutions to many societal challenges already exist, but are simply unrecognized or unused, the World Design Impact Prize (WDIP) aims to validate and promote those solutions, sharing them with a much wider audience to help their dissemination and implementation.
The WDIP, an initiative of the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid), is awarded biennially to those solutions that are designed for impact, that reflect socially conscious design, and that push the boundaries of industrial design.
“We are looking for design that is innovative, that is breaking new ground in the field, that leads to progress, and advances the profession of design. We are looking for the project that has the greatest impact and is thinking about design as a way to solve problems. We want the winner of the prize to plant a seed, and showcase a lot of the extraordinary work that is being done in humanitarian design around the world.” – Dr. Mark Breitenberg, Icsid Senator and Chair of the Review Panel
Projects are nominated by members of Icsid organizations, and a review panel then determines which projects make it to the shortlist, which are ultimately voted on at the Icsid General Assembly by its membership.
For the 2013-2014 cycle, the WDIP shortlist includes the Biolite Home Cookstove, the ABC Syringe, the Laddoo Project, Family by Family, the Refugee Housing Unit, the Potty Project, and the Leveraged Freedom Chair.
Full info on the World Design Impact Prize can be found at their website.