"Inspiration Gets its Day in the Sun"

National Industrial #DesignDay 2017 Lauded Worldwide

It was National Industrial #DesignDay in the United States on March 5, 2017, but reaction poured in from all around the world to the third annual commemoration launched by the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) and entered into the US Congressional Record in 2015.

Supporters from coast-to-coast and several continents shared thoughts, events and photos on National ID Day using #DesignDay and tagging @IDSA on Twitter; Industrial Designers Society of America on Facebook and LinkedIn; and @IDSAdesign on Instagram. In fact, our Facebook post was shared hundreds of times and reached 64,400+ people, promoting our redesigned "What is ID?" page and new video geared toward raising awareness of ID among high school students and counselors, parents and the greater public.

"Imagination gets its day in the sun," wrote Gordon Stannis, IDSA, of @twisthink in Holland, MI in a new blog post in honor of #DesignDay. Penn State's College of Technology students helped school children explore the world of industrial design. See how in this article.

"Back to the drawing board," posted @MerlinTomkins of Wales on Twitter, accompanied by a photo of sketches, as did @DanDevine of south Florida. 

"One of the most inspiring times to be a designer," posted Meghan Preiss, S/IDSA, chair of IDSA's new Students Special Interest Section. "I love that industrial design has given me an inspiring and knowledgeable community. #DesignDay"

"Interested in seeing what the next generation of designes is doing today?" asked RJ Webber, EdD, assistant superintendent for academic services, Novi Community School District, MI and an avid fan of indusrial design education.

"#IP is key to industrial design," declared Banner & Witcoff, a National Industrial Design Day sponsor. During Women's History Month and in anticipation of International #WomensDay on March 8, @BresslerGroup in Philadelphia emphasized the impact of women in design. "Thx 2 GM's 1950s all-female #industrialdesign team 4 retractable seatbelts, glove compartmnts, lightup mirrors."

@Sanja_SRG from Central Europe was hopeful: "I wish #Slovenia would have national industrial #designday someday! That is my way to spread theword about #industrialdesign."

“Industrial design touches all of us every day in countless ways—whether it is represented in the cars we drive, the houses we live in or the medical devices that save lives. Despite the closeness of  industrial design to our lives, many people do not draw the connection between ID and the products designed by the profession," says IDSA Executive Director Daniel Martinage, CAE. "National ID Day focuses on the huge contributions made by industrial designers to our economy and to the greater good."

IDSA chapters, sections, members and all designers can make an impact by:

  • Hosting an Open House: Invite the community to the space where you're making things happen—whether in a classroom, office, studio, manufacturing facility, museum, etc.—to showcase products, processes, education, history and more.
  • Bringing Children to Work: Enlighten the next generation with a tour of a design studio or allow them to shadow designers for a day.
  • Partnering with a Local School or Scout Troop: Plan a lecture or demonstration to teach students or Scouts the value of industrial design.
  • Launching a New Product
  • Going Viral: Share news of your ID celebration or what ID means to you, by using #DesignDay on social media.

Events are planned in March across the country by groups such as IDSA Students Special Interest Section; University of Wisconsin-Stout's IDSA Student Chapter; IDSA Florida Chapter and Miami College of Design; Savannah College of Design's IDSA Student Chapter; IDSA Kentucky Chapter and GE Appliances/FirstBuild; and Art Institute of Orange County, CA. See how IDSA Member TJ KIm and his Purdue University students are teaching the youngest generation about industrial design with new Wonder Labs, while Penn College is reaching out to high schoolers about 3D.

March 5, 2015 was entered into the US Congressional Record as the first National Industrial Design Day when US Rep. Gerald E. Connolly declared that industrial designers “improve our lives in every way and are worthy of our recognition.” The day marked the 50th anniversary of the founding of IDSA, which is headquartered in Herndon, VA—part of Connolly’s 11th Congressional District just outside Washington, DC.

In the United States, product design and related services generate billions of dollars in sales and the number of US-awarded design patents has reached an all-time high. “The economic impact of this industry helps fuel our nation’s economy,” says Connolly. Industrial designers envision the products that fill homes, offices, hospitals, schools and roads—and serve diverse fields ranging from environment to entertainment; social impact to service; communication to recreation. They work in tandem with engineering, manufacturing, marketing and management leaders to create countless innovations used every day such as computers, mobile phones, music players, appliances, GPS, furniture, child safety seats and surgical equipment.

National Industrial Design Day 2017 sponsors include 3M; Banner & Witcoff; Cesaroni Design; Covestro; Crown; Dell; Eastman Innovation Lab; LUNAR; McAndrews, Held & Malloy; Metaphase; Pip Tompkin Design; TEAGUE; Thrive; Tupperware and Aether Learning.

IDSA hosts the annual International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA®) (#IDSAIDEA)—one of the world’s most prestigious and rigorous design competitions—open for entry this year through March 17. Gold and Silver winners will be unveiled in a ceremony and gala Aug. 19—at the culmination of the IDSA International Design Conference 2017: Design IS Business (#IDSA17Atlanta), chaired by Jeevak Badve, IDSA. IDEA winners are featured in INNOVATION magazine's Yearbook of Design Excellence. Annually in the spring, IDSA hosts five coast-to-coast District Design Conferences (#IDSACDDC #IDSANEDDC #IDSASDDC #IDSAMWDDC #IDSAWDDC). For the first time, the Society is hosting a Women+Design Summit (#IDSAWomenDesign), set for May 12. 2017 in San Diego.

IDSA is a member of the World Design Organization.