Organized by Africa Design Days (ADD) and initiated by international designer Hicham Lahlou and the World Design Organization (WDO), this major pan-African and global continental event is an unprecedented showcase for the African innovation and design community as well as a privileged space for exchanges to develop collaborations between designers, policy makers, companies and citizens.
More than 300 participants, including 70 influential international figures in the field of innovation through design will take part in this event which will take place from 28 to 30 June in Rabat, Morocco.
In line with the objectives set by the United Nations, this event will address the challenges of sustainable development, focusing on education issues, economic development, crafts and culture and urban development.
Hicham Lahlou, an emblematic figure of the new design generation, has been part of the new design sphere for more than two decades.
He works to position his country ‘the Kingdom of Morocco’ as a new hub of design on the Continent, his initiatives support the promotion of African design and have been very strongly distinguished with the establishment of FEMADE (the Moroccan Federation of Design) in 2009, followed by Africa Design Award and Africa Design Days + Morocco Design Week / Days and Awards.
With his 22-year career in design in 2017, he has inspired new energy for the emergence of avant-garde initiatives, supported companies and brought his vision and advice to projects that through design, have become examples, for the Continent, as well as internationally.
Prof. Mugendi K. M’Rithaa is an industrial designer, educator and researcher at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. He studied in Kenya, the USA, India and South Africa and holds postgraduate qualifications in Industrial Design and Higher Education, as well as a doctorate in Universal Design. He is widely traveled and has taught in Kenya, Botswana, South Africa and Sweden and is passionate about various expressions of socially conscious (and responsible) design, including: Designerly Strategies for Mitigating Climate Change; Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability; Distributed Renewable Energy; Indigenous Knowledge Systems; Participatory Design; and Universal Design.
Mugendi has a special interest in the pivotal role of design thinking in advancing the developmental agenda primarily on the African continent. He is associated with a number of international networks focusing on design within industrially developing (or majority world) contexts. Mugendi is also Africa’s first President of the World Design Organization™, formerly known as the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design. Much of his work focuses on the importance of WDO in supporting the aspirations of younger designers worldwide.
Gilles Rougon is Head of Transverse Design within the Innovation Hub team of EDF R&D, based on energy issues. In collaboration with researchers, professions, integrated and external designers, he is in charge of defining and developing collaborative innovation approaches within research and operational projects.
After a two-fold formation of engineer (Centrale Lille) and designer (UTC) Gilles first collaborated with PSA Peugeot Citroën as an industrial designer. Gilles Rougon is one of the founding members of the design manager collective "designcode". He is currently a member of various boards of directors: WDO (World Design Organization), Ensad and APCI. He also speaks regularly as a lecturer and teacher.
Considering design as a lever for change and economic agility for organizations, from problem-solving to strategic repositioning, Gilles aims at a useful industrial creation for the end-user for all stakeholders.
Africa Design Days / Awards represents an exceptional positioning opportunity for the Kingdom of Morocco whose geographical position allows it to become a geostrategic hub of design, recognized by WDO.
This concept is a vision for Africa that goes beyond the promotion of the continent’s creative talent. Iit is an ambitious initiative that aims to place design at the heart of progress and the establishment of future projects.
The goal is to position Africa at the centre of the global design scene, a strategy that aims to create, amidst a unified continent, one of the largest emerging design networks, all categories combined.
The World Design Organization (WDO), formerly the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid), is an international non-governmental organization founded to promote the industrial design profession and its ability to generate better products, systems, services and experiences, better business and industry, and ultimately a better environment and society.
From 12 founding professional design associations in 1957, WDO has grown to include more than 140 member organizations from 40 nations, engaging them in collaborative efforts and providing them with the opportunity to be heard internationally.
WDO advocates industrial design driven innovation that creates a better world, engaging its member organizations in collaborative efforts and carrying out international programming using the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals as a framework to guide their activities. WDO's programmes include World Design Capital®, World Design Talks, World Industrial Design Day, World Design Impact Prize and Interdesign. WDO has United Nations Special Consultative Status