Nobel prize for design draws 1,123 nominations from 73 countries

More big companies among INDEX: Award finalists

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Tesla’s Powerwall, Google’s Cardboard, Smart Contact Lenses and Self Driving Car, IKEA’s Better Shelter and Flexible Space. There seem to be more large brands than ever among the 46 finalists of the INDEX: Awards, the Danish biennial equivalent for design of the Nobel prizes. It makes clear that established companies are taking their social responsibility more and more seriously.

Every two years five INDEX: Awards of 100.000 euro’s each are granted to design projects that improve life. It makes the INDEX: Awards the most important design awards in the world. Since the first edition in 2005, the award scheme has grown into one of the world’s biggest showcases of what design can do to address the challenges of our days. This year’s 6th edition drew 1,123 nominations from 73 countries.

Apart from the multinational brands mentioned, the selected finalists include beautiful projects from smaller companies, self employed designers and students too. Among the student projects are Dave Hakken’s Phoneblocks, Alec Momont’s Ambulance Drone, and Boyan Slat’s Ocean Cleanup, all previously described on this blog. There are highly technical solutions, like the imaginative Silk Leaf by British Julian Melchiorri and a Kenyan portable solution called BRCK to provide robust Internet to all corners of the world.

There are also impressively simple ideas with great impact like ColaLife, a British charity that makes use of Coca-Cola’s extensive distribution system to distribute basic medicines against dehydration and diarrhoea across remote areas in Zambia.

Browsing through all these projects one cannot help but feeling joy and optimism about so many great design projects that actually make this world a better place. They all deserve the award.

Top image: Silk Leaf is an artificial leaf that generates oxygen out of water and light

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ColaLife lifts on Coca-Cola's distribution with medicine kits

ColaLife lifts on Coca-Cola's distribution with medicine kits

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