The future of design in Spain

The future of design in Spain

READ is preparing its 7th edition of ENAD (The Anual Meeting of Designers Associations) that will take place in Murcia the 27th and 28th of September 2019 under the motto “We are culture, we build economy”. The theme for this edition will be, once again, design policy, and we will be discussing the plans and strategies that several regions are designing. Both the professional associations and the public institutions will be present.

Meanwhile, READ are focused on a number of challenges that have been emerging over the last year:

The first one is the universal problem of identifying and measuring the design sector. The lack of official stats about design in Spain is making it harder for us to conceive and evaluate design policies. Some big efforts have been made on a regional scale, the latest ones by BCD in Catalonia and by ADCV in the Valencian Community. This is the reason why READ has partnered with the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities and with BCD to conduct an ongoing national survey, Ecosistema del Diseño, that is bearing fruit already. The results can be accessed online at www.ecosistemadeldiseño.es

A lot of work has to be made to raise awareness on design, at multiple levels. The public sector is one of our most important objectives, but the education sector is crucial, and of course the general public. Design should be present in the educational programmes from the early stages of education, and in business schools as well. At the enterprise level we need to develop new ways to calculate the ROI of design investments.

Another rising challenge is design ethics. Not only has READ a working group about a deontological code, we are as well concerned about social responsibility, gender equality and the circular economy. We’re also trying to fight spec work and improving the way the public sector commissions design. The «Project Call», a scheme we proposed to avoid speculative contests, is being adopted by several governments and authorities.

We are working side-by-side with the public administrations to define a new relationship between designers and administration and to find more respectful ways of commissioning design.

The last challenge is the internationalization of Spanish design. READ has launched a project called From Spain With Design that aims to increase the international visibility of our designers. It will comprise of a travelling exhibition, a documentary and a website, www.fswd.es.

Further information about the Spanish Network of Design Associations (READ) can be found here: http://www.designread.es