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Irish Design 2015: The year so far

Irish Design 2015 (ID2015) is a year-long celebration of Irish design with events and initiatives taking place in Ireland and around the world. ID2015 aims to transform the design sector, creating jobs into the future, increasing design based exports and engaging with an audience of over three million people at home and abroad. The year encompasses a wide range of disciplines including: animation, architecture, craft, engineering, fashion, furniture, graphic design, medical and jewellery.

The idea of designating 2015 as the Year of Irish Design emerged from the Global Irish Economic Forum in 2013, which was organised by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. President Higgins is Patron of Irish Design 2015 and the initiative has been included in the Irish Government’s Action Plan for Jobs. ID2015 is being convened by the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, in collaboration with partner organisations on behalf of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Enterprise Ireland.

Ireland’s network of embassies has played an important role in the success of ID2015, with 26 embassies and consulates general committing to collaborating with the initiative by celebrating and promoting Irish design around the world. Some 15 embassies and consulates have already held events ranging from hosting a travelling capsule exhibition of examples of Irish design titled Connections to launching the Global Irish Design Challenge.

The Embassy Network is hosting networking events and trade missions to promote Irish design and to facilitate the development of relationships between buyers, designers and industry representatives.

Irish Design 2015 is part of the Irish Government’s Action Plan for Jobs

The aims of ID2015 include:

  • Raising the profile of Irish design in Ireland and abroad
  • Increasing awareness of the value of design in all aspects of life
  • Building on the international reputation of Irish design
  • Encouraging links between local and global Irish designers
  • Showcasing the importance of design to success in business and as a driver of economic growth

It is hoped that ID2015 will help create 1800+ new jobs in design in Ireland

At the end of ID2015 it is hoped that 1800+ new jobs in design will have been created; 200 new design companies will exist; 300 SMEs will have been supported to attend trade missions or shows; and a €10 million increase in exports will have been achieved.

As we pass the half way point in the year, it’s a good time to take stock of its achievements so far. BigOMedia have created a video to capture the year so far.

So far this year 300+ designers have been showcased in Ireland while 160+ designers have been showcased internationally. 12 exhibitions have been held worldwide and 200 projects and 40 companies have been approved for funding while 24 conferences and talks have taken place.

Pull out quote: So far this year 160+ designers have been showcased internationally

The exhibition Liminal – Irish design at the threshold which features over 20 designers, companies and studios collaborating across disciplines has been shown in Milan, where it was visited by 40,000 people and New York where a further 16,000 visitors saw the exhibition.

In June, Minister for the Diaspora, Jimmy Deenihan TD, visited London to take part in We Built this City, an initiative run by the Irish Architecture Foundation in collaboration with Irish Design 2015. We Built this City is a celebration of the contribution Irish people have made to the built environment from historic to contemporary times and took place in London this Summer, with similar events following in New York and Chicago later in the year.