Torino (Italy) – This week, the first international conference on design policies takes off, looking at design as an instrument for innovation and competitiveness.

Starting from this assertion, the conference Shaping the global design agenda in Torino on November 6-7, 2008 will be the occasion to meet up and debate the role that national design policies can play in growing the economies of developing countries and in innovating those of industrialised ones.

Famous speakers will be the guests of Torino 2008 World Design Capital, including members of governments which, more than others, are making Design Policies a factor of development and economic growth; the most significant cases and the most effective choices made around the world in the field of national design policies will be analysed with them.

Keynote speakers include:

Andrea Bairati
Regional Minister for University, Research, Innovation, Internationalisation, Industry and Energy, Italy

Ibrahim Al Jaidah
Managing Director, Arab Engineering Bureau, Qatar
Will speak about design policy in Qatar and the wider Arab region.

Peter Dröll
Head of the Business Unit in Innovation Policy for the European Commission
Will give an overview of current developments in design policy-making at the European level.

David Kester
Chief Executive, UK Design Council
Will provide delegates with insights about the UK’s new national design strategy published in July 2008.

Fumio Hasegawa
Deputy Director-General (Industry & Distribution), Civic & Economic Affairs Bureau, City of Nagoya
Will talk about the city’s past, present and future within the context of realising a sustainable society.

Giorgiana Penon Orlich
Ministry of Culture and Youth, Department of Design, Costa Rica
Will discuss the development of a design strategy for Costa Rica.

Yrjö Sotamaa
President and Professor, University of Art and Design Helsinki (Taik)
Will speak about design developments in Finland.

Peter Zec
Icsid Senator; Founding Chair of the World Design Capital
Will speak about the World Design Capital project in the context of the global design agenda.

Song Weizu
Representative of the Beijing Municipal People’s Congress; Director, Beijing Industrial Design Centre
Will provide an overview of the opportunities and the challenges facing China to move from ‘Made in China’ to ‘Designed in China’.

Read more about each speaker.

Event registration
To attend the Conference, register in advance online, or purchase your tickets at the door. For information on rates and reduced rates, visit the event registration section.

For more information, visit:

About the World Design Capital

The World Design Capital is a project of the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid).

While there are many awards that recognise individual accomplishments in design, the World Design Capital designation is unique as it aims to docus on the broader essence of design’s impact on urban spaces, economies and citizens. This designation provides a distinctive opportunity for cities to feature their accomplishments in attracting and promoting innovative design, as well as highlight their successes in urban revitalisation strategies.