Now on its third edition, The Design Prize by Designboom honours excellence in the creative industry. The 10 categories in the shortlist span emerging talent, experimentation, curation and lifetime achievement, and winners will be revealed at a glittering ceremony at La Triennale di Milano during the most captivating event on the design calendar, Salone del Mobile – further anchoring this year’s Wallpaper* City of the Year as a cultural epicentre.

Winners will be selected by a jury that includes design studio Neri & Hu, artist erstwhile Wallpaper* guest editor Tomás Saraceno and architect Bjarke Ingels. But, there is a twist. For the second year running, the Social Impact category, that features projects engaging with improvements to the public realm, will have an extra winner. This winner will be chosen by the public creative community via a digital vote.

Last year the Social Impact award was scooped by Scewo, an electric wheelchair, and this year’s three nominees explore similarly thought-provoking innovations. Netherlands-based Boyan Slat’s Ocean Cleanup system aims to remove half of the waste in the Pacific trash vortex in five years; Warka Water by Arturo Vittori is a sustainable water collection tower for Ethiopia, Haiti, Togo and Cameroon; and the work of research group Forensic Architecture uses architectural research and media technologies to investigate state violence and violations of human rights.

Warka Water
Warka Water by Arturo Vittori

Elsewhere in the Design Prize shortlist, Vitra’s ‘Night Fever’ exhibition, Kengo Kuma’s V&A Dundee (Wallpaper* Best Public Building 2019) and ‘Freeing Architecture’ by Junya Ishigami at Fondation Cartier have been recognised in the Exhibition category, while in the Best Designer division, awarded to India Mahdavi last year, the competition will be fought out between Michael Anastassiades, Nendo and Patricia Urquiola.

The awards ceremony will take place on 9 April, the first day of Milan Design Week, and the winners will be presented with Golden Madonnina Awards designed by Antonio Aricò. §