23 Jun 2022
The DE Awards recognize, showcase, and promote the best projects of architecture and design that provide an informative and educational layer that guides us through the increasing complexity of our environment. Such a layer can highlight specific possibilities and challenges, explain sociocultural factors and influences, or even outline new scenarios for future development. Each year, the esteemed panel of judges selects outstanding ideas and implementations in architectural design, product design, universal design, and responsive design.
Visual arts and, even more obviously, language, have long been accepted as forms of expression with social and political impacts. But design and architecture, although generally quieter disciplines, can also communicate and speak to us. The theme of the awards is inspired by the research titled “Educating Buildings” (“Bildende Bauten”) by Dr Peter Kuczia.
(1) Product Design
Products of all scales and types are welcome: e.g., industrial products, household goods, and tools. Exemplary projects submitted to this category in the previous editions include a deployable emergency shelter (Henry Glogau Studio) that can save lives during changing weather conditions in Alaska, and a bicycle wheel (Kristen Tapping) that filters outdoor air pollution.
(2) Architectural Design
Buildings, landscaping, and small forms bring change to their surroundings. Examples from the previous editions are a waste-to-energy plant in Copenhagen (BIG), which is an urban recreation centre with a nature park, ski slope, hiking trail, and climbing wall, as well as an environmental education hub, and a timber bridge (LUO Studio) which both pay tribute to tradition and complement rural revitalization.
(3) Responsive Design
A building, object, or product that is capable of reacting to conditions in a given environment, recognizing a problem, and finding a solution by interacting with its surroundings and users. Examples from the previous editions include a skylight that produces potable water from salt water in the Atacama Desert (Henry Glogau Studio) and an arts centre (Diller Scofidio + Renfro) that can double its surface to provide spatial flexibility for different events.
(4) Universal Design
This category includes designs that may not be strictly in architecture or product design, or which are interdisciplinary or difficult to categorize. Examples from the previous editions include house building prefabs (Urban Beta UG) and backyard facilities elements, which foster the democratization of construction through an open-source approach to building, and a set of emoticons written in Braille (Walda Verbaenen) to build a bridge for visually impaired and blind people to a visual language.
In addition to the general evaluation, the student project with the highest score will be awarded the label of Emerging Designers. Parallel to the Jury’s evaluation, representatives of Solarlux will select the laureates of Solarlux Choice.
Registration opens in June 2022
UTC time zone for all dates.
The registration fees (specified on the website) support the statutory activity of the Laka Foundation. At the Design Educates Awards, no hidden costs will be charged. The only fee is the registration fee, visible during the registration process on the User Panel. If you decide to submit more entries, discounts are applicable (you will see the discount amount during registration). Follow our social channels for seasonal discounts, and note that the price depends on the date you pay for your registration - the earlier, the lower the participation fee.
The host of the DE Awards is the Laka Foundation (nonprofit and non-governmental organization), established in 2017 to implement projects focused on the promotion and popularization of architecture and design.