The case of Valencian design and the EU design policies

Bart Ahsmann, president of BEDA, attended a joint working breakfast in the European Parliament in Brussels on June 26th, focusing on the issue of design in the Valencian Community. This was the first of two working sessions co-chaired by Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation and Ximo Puig, president of the Valencian Government. The second meeting included Mark Nicklas, Head of the Innovation and Investment for Growth Unit and Eurodeputy Soledad Cabezón, among others.

The Valencian Community accounts for 12.3% of the trade mark registers in Spain, 25% of design registers, and 26% of all the design students in the country.

This sessions were organised by Inmaculada Rodríguez-Piñeiro, member of the EP, with the support of the Valencian Designers Association ADCV, part of BEDA’s member READ. It was attended by a large Valencian delegation including some very successful companies like Actiu, LZF Lamps, Porcelanosa, RNB Cosmetics and Zumex, and several representatives of the design profession including Kike Correcher, Vicente Gallega, Pepe Cosín, Rafael Armero and Xavier Giner, who presented their experiences and made the case for the use and promotion of design. Kike Correcher, Key Representative of READ within BEDA, emphasized the need of revisiting the EU Design Action Plan and advancing the design agenda within the EC, and stressed the importance of having better metrics to understand the dimension of the design sector and its value creation, as well as its role as an innovation tool.

After the first meeting, the group was able to discuss the new Research and Innovation Programme with Mark Nicklas and Soledad Cabezón. This programme builds on the previous Horizon 2020 programme and includes a long-term budget for 2021-2027. READ had the occasion to raise concerns about the lack of explicit mention to design, given the fact that the 2013 EU Design Action Plan is now out of date. Both EP members agreed in the opportunity to present amendments to the Programme addressing the mentioned points.

Kike Correcher