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Business of Design Week 2016 Concluded with Italy Named BODW2017 Partner Country

Hong Kong, Hong Kong S.A.R., December 27, 2016 --( Business of Design Week (BODW) 2016 came to a successful end after a series of inspirational talks delivered by over 60 top design professionals from around the world, including the renowned personalities from the creative industry in Chicago, this year BODW’s partner city. During the summit, the Design for Asia (DFA) Awards were also presented to acknowledge outstanding design projects in 2016 and shed a spotlight on individuals who have significantly contributed to Asian designs.

Expecting a stylish wind from Italy

In the final plenary of BODW 2016, Hong Kong Design Centre (HKDC) announced Italy would be its partner country in 2017. Renowned worldwide as a powerhouse in style and design, Italy boosts artists and artisans who have led the way in areas including interior design, fashion, automobile, architecture and many more. Prof. Eric Yim, Chairman of Hong Kong Design Centre concluded, “This year BODW has launched new sessions covering trending themes, such as FASHION ASIA, Food and Design, Workspace and Design. BODW2017 will continue to explore in interesting topics. So, the partner country of BODW2017, Italy, will appeal to the most amazing talents to come to Hong Kong again.”

Learning from the Chicago Experience

The ‘Windy City’ starred as BODW 2016’s partner city, as a large group of Chicagoan designers, architects, artists and administrators visited Hong Kong and brought the spirit of the event tagline “ChicagoMade” with them. To name but a few Chicagoans, Martin Kastner, Scott Wilson, Raaja Nemani, Carol Ross Barney, Brian Lee and Zoe Ryan shared their experiences in various fields, such as urban planning, technology of branding, food design and museum management. The director of UI Labs, Katie Olsen, best described the latest atmosphere of innovation in the city when she discussed her work at BODW, “The only way you can innovate is through collaboration - collaboration between business people and technologists. The biggest challenge is having competing companies coming together and giving up some of their proprietary information to work on a solution, while the problem has already been identified. We are a neutral ground, a facilitator, and a deal maker with whom different companies can come together to innovate.”

Experts in branding foreseeing the future

Renowned brand managers from around the world discussed the ever-changing environment of the industry at the Brand Asia Forum. Julian Ma, Corporate Vice President of Tencent (PRC), shared with audience the Tencent’s corporate strategy and experience. Ma prompted that, “The media is changing very fast. Media is decentralised by social network and reshaped by AI. We are living in a world that media is direct and personalised. People are easily distracted by the overloaded information.”

In the same forum, Raaja Nemani, the CEO of Bucketfeet explained how he used new technology and his extensive network of artists to speed up the access to market for original artist-designed footwear products. He indicated, "A brand is the emotional connection to your customers. In order to build the emotional connection, it is critical to understand 'why' - why are we producing the product. From the thinking process, innovation is driven and value is created. Responsive commerce is a new way of doing business. We only deliver the products to our customers after understanding what they desire and combining with what our brand does. "

Design Masters outline tomorrow lifestyle

Carlo Ratti, the director of MIT Senseable Lab, introduced his recent research in supermarket, “How could a future supermarket be? We started by making clear what we didn't want, that was the 20th-century supermarket where not much interaction was possible between the products and the shoppers. Your digital clicking is possible to be shown in the physical space, such as the nutrition values and the carbon footprint of production. Your desired information will be shown right in front of you. This kind of display is accessible for everybody.”

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