The annual PD&I conference in London congregates some of the UK's best designers for a two days of talks and discussions on current and future trends in industrial design, production and technology.
I was invited to talk about Design House, TEAMS and the 'Design For Local' movement. Similar to my talk in Florida, I explained the rise of the 'local' movement by threading together ongoing trends and unmet needs.
I grew up in England, but have lived in the US since 1998 so I was intrigued to see how relevant the topic of supporting local manufacturing was in the UK. Manufacturing went into a steep decline there in the eighties, long before similar shifts happened in the US. Like in the US, the government used patriotism to defend manufacturing, with "Buy British" campaigns and awareness about products made in the UK. What I found is, like in the US the term 'local' has a lot more value to consumers and could also become meaningful banner to rally under.
We discussed strategies to approach Design For Local, in which we can make local manufacturing have an inherent edge over imports.
I was glad to find that the attractiveness to support local is as relevant in the UK as it is in the US.