On 1st August 2005 the British Design Initiative, established in 1993, became British Design Innovation, a not for profit membership organisation with a range of services reflecting the increasing focus on innovation by designers & industry. The existing membership of strategically-led product, brand, new media, packaging and service design agencies are being joined by university innovation departments, in-house design and innovation teams, innovation agencies and appropriate art & design faculties and their graduates.
This unique membership mix is designed to encourage collaboration between the membership groups to foster a creative environment for collaborative innovation whilst demonstrating the role that strategic design plays in its success. Importantly, British Design Innovation has been launched to communicate that design is an element of the innovation process. The success that strategic-led design can bring will be measured by an organisations ability to engage ‘design thinking’ early enough to make a difference.
We believe that it is more beneficial to promote ‘design-thinking’ than it is to promote ‘design’. Promoting design as a stand alone activity to be purchased at the point of need is consigning it to a commodity and a largely aesthetic process. In relation to general design services, that may be appropriate. In relation to strategic design thinking and innovation, it is not.
Commercial Design Agencies – Design Agency Directory
Membership continues to exist for all type and size of design agency to service the needs of over 420,000 site visitors per annum. All design agencies are represented in the Design Agency Directory. All members are denoted by the BDI marque. All other agencies are registered with BDI on a non-membership level and form part of our inclusivity policy. Over 4,500 commercial design agencies are registered with BDI representing 95% of the commercial design market.
Strategically-led design and innovation consultancies – Design and Innovation Directory Commercial design & innovation consultancies who seek to engage with other players involved in the innovation process are represented within the Design Agency Directory and/or the Innovation Directory. These consultancies and/or individuals are the ‘design thinkers’ with more than 10 years experience in product development and service design propositions across many business sectors.
University Innovation departments, research, scientific and technology led faculties The design thinkers are joined in the Innovation Directory by scientists, technologists, biologists, economists – in fact every type of ‘ist’ with PhD’s in all sorts of ‘ologies’ employed by some of the UK’s leading Universities. PhD’s are encouraged to engage with Design Thinkers to turn research results into market-led ideas and subsequently ideas into market ready propositions.
In-House Design & Innovation teams
Individuals and teams from all type and size of manufacturing, retail, service or technology companies that have a design & innovation focus are eligible for BDI membership. They have access to the Innovation Directory to commission consultancy projects and/or to form partnerships with the ‘thinkers’.
Art & Design Faculties & their Graduates – Graduate Directory
BDI provides membership to individual graduates who elect to join and benefit from the employment opportunities afforded to them through the Graduate Directory and other services. Alternatively Art & Design Faculties can join as an entity and support their graduates in the process of gaining employment and their entry into the working environment. See JOIN BDI to download membership brochure and application forms.