The RSA Student Design Awards 2013: Call For Entries

We recently attended the launch of the annual RSA Student Design Awards Competition, which was held at the RSA headquarters in London and was presented by Sevra Davis. In all, there are eight projects this year. The sponsors gave an overview and short presentation of the briefs, each of which address important social, environmental and economic issues.

About the RSA Student Design Awards

Through the Student Design Awards the RSA have been rewarding craft, ingenuity, insight, communication and social benefit for 88 years. The RSA issues briefs to young designers to demonstrate how the insights and processes of design can solve 21st century problems. They work with leading design educators to develop the skill and confidence of young professionals, while demonstrating to others the power of a design-led approach.

Work is judged on six criteria:

  1. Social and/or Environmental Benefit
  2. Research
  3. Design Thinking
  4. Commercial Awareness
  5. Execution
  6. “Magic” 

See further details of the judging criteria beneath the briefs – which follow here:

WORKPLACE 2030


Award 1: The Royal Bank of Scotland Award
Value: £3,000

Creating the workplace for future generations.
Create a vision for the workplace of the future or an aspect of it that responds to the needs and wants of generations to come.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

CIRCULAR CITY


Award 1: The Patricia Tindale Legacy Award
Value: £1500
Award 2: Royal Mail Award
Value: £1000

Design the built environment for flexibility and zero waste.
Design a structure or other element of the built environment that can be easily disassembled or reconfigured to meet different functional requirements and helps to eliminate construction waste.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

VALUING WATER


Award 1: Paid internship at Yorkshire Water
Value: £1500 plus accommodation expenses
Award 2: RSA Fellows’ Award
Value: £1250

Use design to help people understand the value of water.
Design a means of better communicating and/or revealing the inherent value of water so that people improve their understanding of water as a limited natural resource and a commodity.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

IMPROVE WATER ENVIRONMENTS


Award 1: Paid internship at the Environment Agency
Value: £2500
Award 2: RSA Fellows’ Award
Value: £1250

Reduce water pollution and restore natural river features.
Design or re-design a system, service, product or environment that tackles issues of water pollution and/or the effect of man-made structures on our rivers.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

SOCIAL INSURANCE


Award 1: Endsleigh Insurance Services Award
Value: £1500
Award 2: RSA Fellows’ Award
Value: £1500

Putting the people back into premiums.
Design a means of making car insurance more affordable for young people, namely students, by encouraging safer driving behaviour.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

SPEAKING OF THE SPIRITUAL


Award 1: Touchstone Trust Award
Value: £1500

Use design to help people be spiritual with clarity and confidence.
Design a service, product, environment, or communications campaign that addresses spiritual needs in contemporary contexts.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

CHANGE MAKERS


Award 1: Paid internship at Waitrose (Graphic Design)
Value: £3700 (£2500 plus Royal Mail Award of £1200)
Award 2: Paid internship at Springetts Brand Consultants
Value: £3700 (£2500 plus Royal Mail Award of £1200)

Use design to eliminate waste, over-production or excessive consumption.
Create and produce a design solution that persuades people to consume less, reduce waste and to be more efficient with the planet’s resources.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

THE GOOD JOURNEY


Award 1: Paid internship at NCR
Value: £4250
Award 2: Royal Mail Award
Value: £1000

Make people look forward to their daily commute.
Identify a daily journey – either your own or someone else’s – and improve it in a way that improves it for many people.

Download the brief here  http://www.thersa.org/sda/the-briefs

 

 

HOW TO ENTER


What to expect

After you’ve reviewed the briefs and decided which one/s you are going to work on, you’ll spend the next several weeks, or even months working on the project/s. If you are going to submit into the RSA Student Design Awards competition, you need to register, either online or by post, and send in your work. The deadline for registrations, entry fees and submission of work is 22 March 2013. You can register online from early January 2013, or by post by sending in a hard copy of the entry form. Once your registration and entry form are received (whether online or by post), you’ll receive a confirmation e-mail.

Submissions into each brief are judged by a different judging panel. The panel will meet over two non-consecutive days to assess the submissions; the first meeting is a short-listing session and the second meeting consists of interviews with all short-listed candidates.

To download an Entry Pack, including the Guidelines for Entry click here.

Judging

RSA Student Design Awards juries consist of practising designers and representatives from industry, education and other sponsoring organisations. The judging of each project takes place over two meetings. At the first meeting, the juries view all the submissions and draw up a short-list which demonstrates potential creative ability within the constraints set out in the project brief. Short-listed candidates are invited for interview at which they will discuss their competition entry. Portfolio work and plans for the use of an award may also be discussed.

Juries are also able to make constructive criticisms of each candidate’s portfolio and offer advice. Juries are asked to make an award only when they are entirely satisfied with the design ability of the candidate.

Judging criteria

There are six judging criteria that your work will be measured against. The judging critieria are weighted differently for each brief and the weightings can be easily understood through pie charts in the top right-hand corner on the second page of each brief. The judging criteria are:

  1. Social and/or Environmental Benefit
    How does your design benefit society and/or the environment?
  2. Research
    Where did you go to research this issue? Whom did you speak to or interview? What questions did you ask? What did you learn?
  3. Design Thinking
    We want to know about your thought processes and insights. Your insights might be research-based or intuitive, or a combination of both, but the judges want to see you relate the final concept clearly to these insights. What journey did you go through to get to the final result?
  4. Commercial Awareness
    Does your design make sense from a financial point of view?
  5. Execution
    We are looking for a design that is pleasing and looks and feels well resolved.
  6. “Magic” 
    We are looking for a bit of “magic” – a surprising or lateral design solution that delights.

Judging panels

The RSA appoints a different judging panel for each Student Design Awards project, usually comprising a chair, selected from the RSA Council or the Faculty of Royal Designers for Industry, together with design professionals, design educators and representatives of the sponsoring organisations.

For further information  http://www.thersa.org/sda/home

For updates on the RSA Student Design Awards, please follow The RSA on Twitter: @RSADesignAwards