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Innovation through cooperation

The Norwegian Design Council, together with the design and architecture environment in Norway knows that user-oriented designers are possibly the most accessible and efficient innovation tools available in product development. Working creatively, with innovation and cooperation, Norwegian designers and architects will continue to “raise the bar” with products that are aesthetic, sustainable, user-friendly, environmentally responsible and commercially successful.

Norwegians have been traditionally fascinated by the world around them, from exploring unknown distant lands to the close beauty of their spectacular homeland. This unity with nature, combined with a deep-seated value of common sense and practical solutions, lays the basis for a unique attitude towards design. Understanding that design means far more than image, and can only become a true success when it contributes to improved functionality, substance and enhanced use, is a core strength of Norwegian designers and architects.

One pillar of Norwegian design is the country’s top notch educational structure. Schools that include the Oslo School of Architecture and Design, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Oslo National Academy of the Arts and the Bergen National Academy of the Arts are well known for their excellence in education. This creative talent is then supported by member organizations that are in place to provide professional support.

Improving Competitiveness
The Norwegian Design Council (NDC) plays a central role in promoting and integrating design within Norwegian business, a responsibility with results that are felt far beyond Norway’s borders. The NDC has a full understanding that Norwegian companies must excel within their respective lines of work in order to tackle the challenges of a global marketplace, a world with knowledgeable and demanding customers who know good value when they see it and have high expectations to match.

Through programmes and services offered by the NDC, Norwegian companies are encouraged and empowered to use design as a tool for innovation and greater competitiveness. By offering consultancy services related to development of products and services, packaging design, branding, corporate identity projects, workshops, seminars and a wide range of similar services, the NDC sees to it that Norwegian companies are well prepared.

Vågen College in Sandnes, Norway
© LINK signatur AS

The Knowledge Hub
The Center for Design and Architecture (DogA) hosts both the Norwegian Design Council as well as Norsk Form. DogA is an award-winning building in a historic area of Oslo featuring renovated architectural gems from the last century and before. Norsk Form champions design and architecture in this country, using exhibitions, publications, conferences, evening meetings, study tours, award ceremonies, competitions, networks as well as workshops for children and adolescents, to draw attention to and improve understanding of the importance of design and architecture.

This information and project-based institution serves as an arena for interdisciplinary studies, innovation, debate and network-building in the fields of design, architecture and urban area planning.

Strong Business Development
Financed by the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI), the Norwegian Design Council is an important part of the governmental strategy to increase the competitiveness of Norwegian trade and industry. In addition, the NDC also works in close cooperation with a wide range of other Norwegian organizations, including the strategic cooperation with Innovation Norway. This close alliance is geared to strengthen design in Norway, with the ultimate goal being the delivery of continually improving products and services to businesses and consumers both in Norway and abroad.

Innovation Norway works with companies through different phases of their business development process, beginning with the assessment of marketing opportunities and priorities, and moving onwards to entrance strategies, establishment and expansion. The ultimate goal is to help them to increase their product or service impact within Norway and on the global market.

Strength in Cooperation
The Norwegian Design Council works with Innovation Norway by identifying and defining new areas of focus; development projects and workshops; and a range of other support and services. All of this activity is this based on ongoing dialogue with non-profit organizations such as Grafill, the Norwegian Organization of Interior Architects and Furniture Designers (NIL), and Norwegian Industrial Designers (NID).

NIL represents its members in contributing to solid quality within areas such as project planning of public and private interior for new and old buildings, selection of colour and materials and management, leadership and advice within interior projects.

NID is the association for professional industrial designers in Norway. Members of this association work within product design, public and transportation design, graphic and packaging design, communication and new media design, furniture and textile design. GRAFILL is the Norwegian organization for visual communication within the areas of graphic design, illustrations, interactive design, animation and creative development, representing the leading Norwegian artists and craftsmen within this area.

  Lighting installation in Steen & Strom restaurant ‘Emil & Samuel’ in Oslo.
© Cathrine Kullberg

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