Manufacturers and designers entered a record number of around 5,200 innovations in the Red Dot Award: Product Design 2016. The jury was also bigger than before, with 41 experts coming together in the Ruhr area to assess each and every object live and on site over a period of several days. Only designs that set themselves apart considerably through their high design quality received the sought-after award “Red Dot”. The striking winner label will decorate the year’s best products with immediate effect. The jury awarded the “Red Dot” to 1,304 products. Only 79 entries were bestowed the honour of the top award, the “Red Dot: Best of the Best”; 107 won an Honourable Mention.
In 2016, 57 countries put themselves forward in the worldwide comparison and entered their submissions in the race for the sought-after distinction, which breaks down into the following: The “Honourable Mention” goes to projects with a well-executed aspect of design work. Entries with high design quality receive the “Red Dot”, while the rare individual distinction “Red Dot: Best of the Best” is assigned by the jury to outstanding products in a category that win the jury members over with ground-breaking design.
According to the strict rules of Red Dot, only freelance designers, design professors and specialised journalists are traditionally appointed to the jury – but not designers employed at companies potentially participating. The degree of innovation, formal quality, functionality, and ecological compatibility are some of the criteria used to reach a decision. In 2016, Hideshi Hamaguchi, Kristiina Lassus and Raj Nandan were part of the jury. Hideshi Hamaguchi received global recognition for inventing the USB flash drive, while Kristiina Lassus is a successful product designer and owner of her own design studio. Raj Nandan is the founder and owner of Indesign Media Asia Pacific, a publishing company that publishes design and architecture-based works of high repute.
The experts consciously assess the special intercultural aspects of design and thus guarantee an evaluation that serves as a guide for manufacturers and designers worldwide. Danish fashion designer David Andersen, who made his debut as a Red Dot juror in 2015, was also on site for the jury session: “It is inspiring to see designs from all over the world and to follow the development. It is a pleasure to be a juror in a group of such competent designers who are looking at so many fantastic products and discussing each one individually.
Automotive design legend Chris Bangle and the renowned technology designer Alexander Neumeister were part of the Red Dot jury for the first time. Chris Bangle is best known for his tenure as Chief of Design for the BMW group and founded his own design studio “Chris Bangle Associates”. He was impressed by the jury session: “The huge diversity of the entrants and the sheer number of products, devices and designs that have been entered goes far beyond any other award I’ve ever seen,” says Bangle. “Almost everything had to have a deep discussion about it and it was very good to hear what my fellow jurors said.” Some of Alexander Neumeister’s best-known works are the German ICE trains, the magnetic monorail Transrapid, the Japanese Shinkansen “Nozomi 5oo“, as well as local trains and underground railways.
The laureates of the Red Dot Award: Product Design 2016 can expect an extensive package of measures: They use the winner label as a marketing tool and are integrated in the international PR activities of Red Dot. The Red Dot Design Museum Essen exhibits the award-winning products from 4 July, and the Red Dot Design Yearbook 2016/2017 also presents the award-winning products. All of the products and their makers are also featured in the online presentation and on the Red Dot 21 global design platform as well as in the Red Dot App.
The Red Dot Gala will take place on Monday, 4 July 2016. During the glamorous awards ceremony in the Aalto-Theater in Essen, Germany, the winners of the highest distinction “Red Dot: Best of the Best” will be honoured. Afterwards, guests and laureates celebrate together at the “Designers’ Night” in the Red Dot Design Museum in the midst of award-winning products. In the course of this legendary after-show party, the Red Dot and Honourable Mention winners receive their deserved certificates; all laureates will additionally have the opportunity to present themselves to the media and the attendant design industry next to their products in the winners’ exhibition “Design on Stage”.
Facts and figures for the Red Dot Award: Product Design 2016
Entries: about 5,200
Red Dot: Best of the Best: 79
Red Dot: 1,304
Honourable Mention: 107
About the Red Dot Design Award
In order to appraise the wide scope of design in a professional manner, the Red Dot Design Award is broken down into the three distinct disciplines: the Red Dot Award: Product Design, Red Dot Award: Communication Design and Red Dot Award: Design Concept. The Red Dot Award is organised by the Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen in Essen, Germany. With more than 17,000 entries in 2015 alone, it is one of the largest design competitions in the world. In 2015, the award celebrated its 60th anniversary: It was in 1955 that a jury convened for the first time to assess the best designs of the day. The name and brand of the award were developed in the 1990s by Red Dot CEO, Professor Dr. Peter Zec. Since then the sought - after Red Dot is the revered international seal of outstanding design quality.