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Design Council Announces its Future Pioneers Discovered at New Designers – The Next Generation of Design Talent

The Design Council has today announced its first ever Future Pioneers winners – a new scheme to support emerging design talent, in partnership with the New Designers exhibition.

The winners’ designs included a digital anti-loneliness quilt for children in hospital and a campaign against conflict minerals. 

Future Pioneers is the Design Council’s new initiative to celebrate and nurture the most principled, passionate and purposeful young designers. An esteemed judging panel of designers and design experts picked five out of 1,400 graduates from Part 2 of New Designers 2013, the exhibition for emerging designers, to become Future Pioneers.

These young designers will be rewarded with a programme of promotion and bespoke support, including a chance to exhibit their work at 100% Design, the UK’s largest design trade event, in September.

Future Pioneers aims to raise awareness of the positive impact design can have by providing a platform for designers with the potential to contribute to economic growth and solve social problems in inspiring and exciting new ways.

The Future Pioneers discovered at New Designers 2013 are:

Joshua Barnes, University of Brighton – Augmented Quilt
As a means to combat symptoms of loneliness experienced by children staying long periods of time in hospital, the Augmented Quilt opens up an additional line of communication between the child and their loved ones. Each animal illustration on the quilt can be linked to a friend of family member, who can in turn leave digital messages.

Lucie Barouillet, Central St Martins -ImPatients
This project aims to improve the health outcomes of those with type 1 diabetes by giving people information and greater control so that they can manage their treatment more effectively.

Sam Clifford, University of Dundee – Mycofilter
This design involves a delivery system aimed to filter toxins from contaminated lakes and rivers. Mycofiltration uses live mushroom filaments called mycelia to function as a cellular net, giving the ability to catch and digest harmful contaminants such as heavy metals and synthetic pollutants.

Fiona Harkins, University of Dundee – Make&Get
An iPad app to encourage resourcefulness in crafting. Users input materials they have in the house and the app outputs projects they can create. The app also allows users to share materials ensuring less waste and building communities.

Matt Wilson, University of Portsmouth – Conflict Free Electronics
Demand Conflict Free Electronics is an awareness campaign that aims to educate people about conflict minerals being used in electronics. The campaign animates a script using simple vector graphics to illustrate a powerful story to convince people to support charities and demand a stop to conflict minerals being used in electronics.

Mat Hunter, chief design officer at the Design Council and Future Pioneers judge, commented:

“We were deeply impressed by the sophistication of the thinking, the quality of the making, and the diversity of needs catered for by these talented and inspiring young designers. Design is finding ever more ingenious ways to affect the world in a positive way, and with such capable and creative graduates the UK can be proud of its global standing.”

Isobel Dennis, Director of New Designers, commented:

“New Designers is arguably the most important design event in the UK for ensuring the life cycle of the design industry continues and thrives.  The careers and fresh thinking it generates is hard matched elsewhere and it was clear that the Design Council recognised this in it being the perfect platform to launch its Future Pioneers programme.  We wholly support and endorse this new initiative as it reflects the values we place in bringing new design talent to the wider public.  The genuine goodwill and spirit between the New Designers and Design Council teams will ensure this programme has every opportunity to grow and continue to recognise excellent talent emerging from our universities nationwide for many years to come.”

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