Latest Conference

Contemporary shifts in society, technology, production are reframing design processes, approaches and tools. While professionals, educators and researchers are questioning the next stage of innovation, design is evolving as a wide open field with many applications and meanings. More than ever it is important to investigate through design research and practice in order to tackle the societal, technological and industrial shifts of the future.

The 12th EAD Conference is hosted by Sapienza University of Rome in Italy, and it will foster discussion among designers, academics and experts about the articulated scenario of contemporary design and its perspectives, with intent to nurture diversity and interdisciplinarity.

‘Design for Next …’ is the title and topic of the Conference: ‘Next’ implies the concept of proximity as well as of destination, related to time and to physical space. The conference seeks to discover future fields of investigation in design, as well to discover and to connect the space and the people who share common interests in design research.

We invite contributions from professionals, academics and students to address the following questions with their own research, projects and experiences: What is Design for the Next? And what is the ‘Next’ focus of Design?

The Conference is organized into 9 parallel tracks in order to address 9 wide fields of Design for Next……

Aesthetics | Economy | Education | Environment | Health | Industry | Society | Technology | Thinking

Each track will center around a keyword to engage and tackle the different fields of Design research and practice. Together, in this process, we will draw the big picture of Next Design…..


“If others can see it as I have seen it, then it may be called a vision rather than a dream.”
W. Morris, News from Nowhere (1890)

Message from the EAD

Dear friends,

As I am sure you are all too painfully aware in the UK referendum yesterday people were given the choice either to remain or leave the EU. This morning we heard that the unthinkable had happened, and that the majority vote was to leave. Social media is awash with people who cannot believed the UK population has made such a decision, and have huge concerns over what will happen in the future. It was a decision which is clearly diametrically opposed to the aims and objectives of the European Academy of Design, which for over 20 years has strived to make closer connections with design researchers in other countries.

As a community of open-minded scholars we obviously worry about what will happen to the UK university and academic sectors, and to the thousands of friendships that have been forged through cross-border collaborations in research and teaching. We know we want to maintain our collaborations and connections.

Whatever happens, the EAD will continue to promote such alliances and to bring design researchers together from across the continents. We look forward to seeing you all in Rome next year…

Paul Atkinson, Louise Valentine, Rachel Cooper