INDEX Design to Improve Life

This week during the Design for Social Impact workshop in CIID we went on a field trip to INDEX.

INDEX: Design to Improve Life® is a Danish NPO with global reach. They Inspire, Educate and Engage in designing sustainable solutions to global challenges.

They do this by means of:

  • INDEX: Award, the biggest design award in the world worth €500.000, and widely recognized as the most important design award in the world.
  • Our world touring INDEX: Award Exhibition, showcasing the finalists for INDEX: Award.
  • Design to Improve Life Education.
  • Design to Improve Life Partnerships.
  • Design to Improve Life Investment.

It was very interesting to see how does this kind of institution look from inside. After a presentation about the mission and idea of INDEX, they showed us examples of awarded designs – they are unbelievable! The one that impressed me the most was Smart Highway  by Daan Roosegaarde, the 2013 award winner.

“We live in a city of endless gray concrete roads, surrounded by steel lamps. They have a huge visual impact on our city. But why do they remain so rough and without imagination? Why not make them a vision about mobility, a symbol of the future?” – says Daan Roosegaarde

Another cool idea: computer scientists from University of Cambridge developed the Raspberry Pi, a tiny and highly affordable computer that can be used by people all over the world. It’s the size of a credit card, costs a mere $35, designed to activate kids and curious adults into coding computers.

What motivated them was the dramatic digitalization of our world requires future generations to be equipped with special skills, enabling them to steer the helm of the computer age.