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Asia Bursting With Design & Creativity Conferences.


I?? off on December 1 to Incheon, Korea to give a keynote speech at the Design Korea conference. The speech is on ??esignomics,?a wonderful phrase that expresses the tight relationship between design and economic growth (if you prefer to call it “innovation” or “creativity,” that’s OK by me).

Last week I was on stage in Singapore interviewing Minister of Finance Tharman (former Minister of Education and current member of the Economic Development Board) about creativity and the future of his incredible city-state. The night before I was in the President Palace and watched Singapore President R S Nathan personally give out 11 President’s Design Awards. It wasn’t left to the President’s wife, as it is in the US.

This was followed by the ICSID conference in Singapore, that followed the DesignSingapore Festival that followed a wonderful Design Thinking Symposium.

Get it? Now off to Korea. While I’m there, Hong Kong has it’s Business of Design Week from November 30-December 5. And I’m not even mentioning China or Twaiwan and the billions they are pouring into Design.

This is all official policy from policy-makers. Sure, many don’t “get” design and prefer to see it in terms of creativity. That’s fine. It’s still government policy-makers putting billions into design education, design contests and local designers. In the US, the only push for design from policy-makers comes in the form of promoting “intelligent design,” an alternative to scientific evolution. Think about it.


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