Judging has commenced for the inaugural Designers Australia 2021 Awards launched by the Design Institute of Australia (DIA).

DIA’s new design awards program received an overwhelming response from Australia’s broader design community and more than 70 entries are expected to be shortlisted. The jury comprises prominent international and Australian jurors including Dutch trend forecasters Li Edelkoort and Philip Fimmano; Italian designer Lorenzo Palmeri; cross-disciplinary Yamatji Wajarri artist Nicole Monks; architecture and built environment professor Tuba Kocaturk; TEDxSydney’s Fenella Kernebone; and industrial design expert Dr Rafael Gomez.

The Designers Australia 2021 Awards support emerging and established designers (individuals and collectives) in Australia across the breadth of the design disciplines advocated by the DIA, and bring together Australia's broader design community to celebrate ethical, innovative and impactful design thinking.

Focusing on the design process as much as the outcome, the awards consider how the designer's work responds to authenticity, diversity, equality, inclusivity, community and the environment.

By encouraging collaboration, conversation, and deep listening, the awards reinforce the DIA's collective commitment to growing the value and role of design, the impact of designers, and their influence on today's culture and society. 

Designers Australia 2021 Awards Jury

Alessandra Baldereschi: Italian designer, named by AD Spain as one of the best new-generation designers whose work explores traditional craft techniques in a contemporary context.  

Susanna Bilardo: Director of Enoki and an accomplished interior architect. 

Lisa Cahill: CEO and artistic director at the Australian Design Centre. 

Gavin Campbell: DIA president; previously with HASSEL, and now a specialist design consultant.  

Lidewij Edelkoort and Philip Fimmano: Renowned Dutch trend forecasters, publishers, humanitarians, design educators, and exhibition curators. 

Marcus Fairs: Founder and editor-in-chief of Dezeen and the first digital journalist to be awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Institute of British Architects. 

John Gertsakis: Director of the recently established Product Stewardship Centre of Excellence and a senior policy sustainability adviser with the DIA. 

Dr Rafael Gomez: Study area coordinator for Industrial Design at Queensland’s University of Technology (QUT) and founder and head of the BMW Group + QUT Design Academy. 

Peta Heffernan: Co-founding director of LIMINAL Studio, a design and architecture practice known for inventive outcomes fed by creative thinking and collaboration. 

Fenella Kernebone: Director of Frankly Group and head of curation for TEDxSydney. 

Tuba Kocaturk: Professor of Integral Design at Deakin University, School of Architecture and Built Environment. 

Dr Scott Mayson: Associate dean of Research & Innovation for the School of Fashion and Textiles at RMIT University. 

Nicole Monks: Trans-disciplinary artist of Yamatji Wajarri, Dutch and English heritage, taking focus on storytelling to connect the past with the present and future. 

Lorenzo Palmeri: Multifaceted designer and musician, collaborating on projects with Bruno Munari and Isao Hosoe.  

Quan Payne: Award-winning creative known for his holistic brand building for Nike, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group and Calvin Klein. 

The Designers Australia 2021 Awards shortlist will be released on Tuesday, 25 May 2021. 

Winners will be announced at simultaneous hybrid events across each state on Thursday, 5 August 2021.