Industrial design is the creative engine of the economy
It is hard to look around and not admire the imagination behind the range of new products that have improved our quality of life over the past century. From smartphones and computers to home appliances, electrical appliances, heavy industrial appliances and more, we have realized the importance of industrial design in enriching our lives and strengthening our economies.
In this context, economists should pay homage to behind-the-scenes industrial designers who have created and marketed endlessly mass-produced consumer products in a way that is user-oriented, functional, visually appealing, and competitive. Indeed, industrial design is rapidly emerging as a creative and dynamic force shaping global economies today. It is also an essential lever for finding innovative and sustainable solutions to many of today’s challenges.
In the early 20th century, many of the leading industrial stylists made history with innovative inventions and practical everyday products. Examples include the interiors of motor cars and boats, furniture, glass containers, and internal combustion engines for airplanes and boats. Famous shops and museums praised the beauty and function of well-designed consumer products and certified stylists through exhibitions that demonstrated the ingenuity of industrial design.
Today, industrial design is one of the core principles of large economies and many governments have dedicated government agencies to support this sector. At the same time, many successful companies have established in-house design teams to guide work on product innovations along with research and development activities. In fact, a growing body of research is highlighting the contribution of the design sector to booming economies. Investing in industrial design is related to improved sales performance, innovation, unique competitive advantage, business growth and job creation. In 2018, the Design Council published a report highlighting the significant contributions of the design sector to the UK economy, noting that it generated 85 85.2 billion in total value added in 2016, while employing around 1.69 million people in design roles and with 78,030 stylists. – Intensive companies of the country.
For many obvious reasons, a number of intensive design economies are creating policies to support industrial designers. Finland, for example, is a leader in design, generating 12.3 billion euros in 2018 thanks to its design firms. Finnish companies leave an indelible impression on consumers with their unique beauty that celebrates Scandinavian simplicity combined with functionality. These qualities are evident in the design of products, services, heavy industrial products and business processes.
Finland’s national design program has highlighted a number of important policies to improve design and research skills, such as introducing design culture into educational curricula. Special design training programs have also been developed for public sector employees to provide them with the knowledge and skills needed to benefit from design in the redesign of public services. Design toolkits have been released to further enhance design-driven activities, such as crowd gathering, co-design, prototyping, and experimentation. Companies are also encouraged to experiment with the latest materials and production techniques, such as 3D printing. Also, cooperation between academic institutions, research centers and companies is encouraged to further enhance development and marketing.
The role of industrial design as an essential lever for our societies and economies must be recognized.
Sarah Al Mulla
Other policies focused on integrating design into business operations, promoting design in research and development activities, supporting creative and intensive design work, and supporting the production of design-related products and the marketing of design products. Particular attention is paid to how design can benefit from intelligent technologies, as well as organic and circular economics.
This field has also gained popularity in the Middle East. For example, the UAE Ministry of Industry and New Advanced Technology is promoting the industrial sector by attracting talented innovators, providing world-class infrastructure, logistical support, advanced technological capabilities, patenting and raw material availability. Materials to support the industrial production process. Saudi Arabia offers courses in industrial design at a number of its universities and Effat University in Jeddah hosted Saudi Industrial Design Week, which brought together the brightest minds in the field.
The MENA region must adopt industrial design as a key economic lever by implementing revolutionary political measures. Governments need to integrate design education and skills development into curricula and introduce design degrees in universities. Some South Korean universities offer advanced industrial design programs with the latest technology and equipment to support innovation in information technology, automobiles, robotics, biometric products, and digital consumer electronics.
Intensively designed firms should receive support services such as free zones, design spaces with incentive incentives, incubation centers, consulting and advisory services, domestic and foreign product promotion programs, and tax credits. Designers’ intellectual property rights must be protected by providing immediate patent registration services. Many financial support solutions need to provide support and funding for industrial innovators to market their products. Specific guidelines should be issued on how companies can integrate design into business processes to increase productivity and performance. The world of industrial design should occupy a central stage at trade fairs to raise awareness of innovative emerging products and their value in public life and the economy. In some cases, setting quotas for design investments may also encourage adoption.
It is clear that industrial design evolves with the demands of strategic sectors, in parallel with the needs of society. Thus, the role of industrial design must be recognized as an essential lever for our societies and economies.
• Sarah Al Mulla is an Emirati employee interested in human development policies and children’s literature. It can be accessed at www.amorelicious.com.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by the authors in this section are theirs and do not necessarily reflect those of Arab News.