Montreal (Canada), 2 November 2020 – In celebration of United Nation’s World Cities Day, recognized on 31 October each year, World Design Organization (WDO)® is pleased to announce the launch of the 2024 World Design Capital® (WDC) bid process, which marks the 9th biennial designation since the programme’s inception. Interested cities from around the globe are invited to apply to demonstrate the ways they are using design to create inclusive, resilient and sustainable cities. 

The WDC programme supports WDO’s vision to design for a better world and its commitment to showcase design-led innovation that contributes to the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), namely SDG 11, which focuses on sustainable cities and communities.

“There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally altered the ways in which we inhabit our cities,” said WDO President Srini Srinivasan. “Now more than ever, as new challenges continue to emerge as a result of this global health crisis, there is an indisputable benefit for cities to look to design solutions to build more responsive and accessible urban environments, create lasting opportunities for economic growth and diversify their creative legacies.”

In addition to fostering closer ties within the local design community, the bid process has enabled WDC cities to successfully leverage existing design assets, and better understand what is needed for future urban and economic development. Previously, designated cities have utilized the WDC platform to promote their status as leaders in design-driven innovation, to attract investment and tourism, to support creative industries and to increase public awareness of the role of design in improving everyday  life. 

Bids for the designation undergo an extensive evaluation process and are reviewed by a panel that comprises seven international experts from the fields of design education, architecture, public policy, media and urban planning. These experts are tasked with evaluating the bids, shortlisting the cities and ultimately deciding which applicant  will be awarded the biennial title. 

The WDC 2024 Selection Committee includes (in alphabetical order):

  • Sasha Alexander, Director of Academic Program for Industrial Design, Western Sydney University
  • Sahar Attia, Professor of Architecture and Urban Design, Cairo University 
  • Marva Griffin, Founder and Curator of SaloneSatellite, Milan 
  • Kengo Kuma, Founder, Kengo Kuma and Associates; Professor, Department of Architecture, University of Tokyo
  • Gisele Raulik Murphy, Co-Founder and Partner, DUCO Design Intelligence
  • Srini Srinivasan, Chairman and CEO, LUMIUM Design; President, World Design Organization 
  • Richard Voyles, Daniel C. Lewis Professor, Purdue Polytechnic Institute, Purdue University 

For more information about the bidding process, to download the application guide for the WDC 2024 designation or to learn more about Becoming a WDC, visit

The deadline for applications is 31 March 2021. 

For more information, please contact:

About WDO®

The World Design Organization (WDO)®, formerly the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid), is an international non-governmental organization founded in 1957 to promote the profession of industrial design. WDO advocates industrial design driven innovation that creates a better world, engaging more than 170 member organizations in collaborative efforts and carrying out international programming—World Design Capital®, World Design Talks™, World Design Impact Prize™, World Industrial Design Day™, and Interdesign™. WDO has United Nations Special Consultative Status.


About World Design Capital®

World Design Capital® (WDC), designated every two years by the World Design Organization® (WDO), is awarded to recognize cities for their effective use of design to drive economic, social, cultural, and environmental development. Through a year-long programme of events, the designated city showcases best practices in sustainable design-led urban policy and innovation that improve quality of life. Previous WDCs include Torino (Italy) in 2008, Seoul (South Korea) in 2010, Helsinki (Finland) in 2012, Cape Town (South Africa) in 2014, Taipei (Taiwan, Chinese Taipei) in 2016, Mexico City (Mexico) in 2018 and Lille Metropole (France) in 2020. Valencia (Spain) has been awarded the designation for 2022.