Valencia (Spain), 3 November 2022 — World Design Organization (WDO)® announced today the launch of the World Design Capital® (WDC) 2026 bid process, which marks the 10th biennial designation since the programme’s inception. Interested cities from around the globe are invited to mobilize local design stakeholders during the five-month application period in an attempt to create and submit a robust bid showcasing the design merits of their region.
The WDC is a cornerstone programme in WDO’s long-standing mandate to demonstrate design’s ability to contribute to the development of more inclusive, resilient and liveable cities. In particular, the initiative has become a recognized and coveted designation for cities seeking to showcase their commitment to design-led innovation that contributes to the achievement of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), namely SDG 11, which focuses on sustainable cities and communities.
“While the challenges facing today’s cities are becoming increasingly complex, the World Design Capital programme continues to stand as a powerful reminder of how urban design policy and innovation can improve quality of life,” stated WDO President David Kusuma. “We hope to continue to build upon this unique legacy of empowering the people and projects that are bettering the world’s cities through design.”
In addition to leveraging existing design assets, the bid process has enabled WDC applicant cities to foster closer ties within the local design community and better understand what is needed for future urban and economic development. Previously designated cities have utilized the WDC platform to attract investment and tourism, to promote their status as leaders in design-driven innovation, to support creative industries and to increase public awareness of the role of design in improving everyday life.
For more information about the bidding process, to download the application guide or to learn more about becoming a WDC, visit https://wdo.org/programmes/wdc/becoming-a-wdc/.
The deadline for applications is 31 March 2023.