2018 Good Design Awards – Groundbreaking Winners Announced

Next Gen Award 2


The evolution of design represents the history of private life; its remains are a record of man’s significant achievements. Design reflects societies attitudes and philosophies and its fashions and passions for over thousands of years of continual change.

Central to Australia’s economic and social success in our contemporary world are our creative industries. They ensure students of design in all aspects of professional and personal life have the skills, resources, and the resilience to play an active role in Australia’s future, which is and remains, productive.

Australia-2015-Good-Design-Awards-TrophiesThe annual Good Design Awards in Australia have been promoting excellence in design and innovation since 1958. They are recognized by the World Design Organization (WDO) as Australia’s peak international design endorsement program.

In 2018 the Good Design Awards attracted a record number of entries, all seeking to win the prestigious top award; 536 designs and 269 projects competed for first prize.

For this year’s projects 169 were designed in Australia with 46 from Victoria, 80 from NSW, 24 from Queensland, 13 from South Australia, four from Western Australia, one from the Australian Capital Territory.

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Best in Class – Architectural Design – Interior Design, Designed by Futurespace, Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

100 entries came from New Zealand, the UK, Sweden, Finland, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, USA, Canada, Mexico, Japan, Korea, China and Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, India and Indonesia.

The value of international engagement is to test the work of creative Australians on a global scale, enabling our designers at any age to not only learn from other cultures and creatives, but also be emboldened to gain access to larger and expanding markets.

Chair Design

The Jumpseat, Joint Best in Class: Product Design – Furniture and Lighting, Designed by: Sedia Systems, Ziba Design (USA), Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

There were thirty (30) Best in Class Award Winners, from which the Good Design Award® of the Year was chosen.

Good design that works reflects the diversity of modern society and outlines a vision for the arts, cultural heritage and creative industries.

Simple in appearance and use, but fabulously clever in design and engineering” is what the judges said about the winner of the Joint Best in Class: Product Design – Furniture and Lighting designed by Sedia Systems, Ziba Design (USA).

The Jumpseat ‘provides a solution to the need for seating where space is limited’.

Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

Good Design Showcase: Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

All the winners will receive their awards as part of Vivid Sydney, the world’s largest festival of light, music and ideas. The 2018 award winners and a retrospective selection of winning projects from the last 60 years, will be on view to the public FREE at the Good Design Showcase, 25 – 27 May 2018, at the Overseas Passenger Terminal, Circular Quay in Sydney.

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Facett designed by Blamey Saunders. Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

Good Design Australia Chief Executive, Dr Brandon Gien applauded the incredibly high standard of submissions this year, noting the Awards “… make a positive impact on our quality of life,” said Dr. Gien.

The judges couldn’t separate two outstanding finalists, Melbourne-based Blamey Saunders for the Facett modular Hearing Aid and the Sydney-based Meld Studios for their project - Growing Human-Centred Design Across Queensland Government.

They announced at a Gala Ceremony in Sydney on Thursday May 17, it was a tie for first place.

Facett’s modular hearing aid represents elegance in design, reflecting the strong history of the awards in product design.

Facett was also honoured with the prestigious CSIRO Design Innovation Award because the Judges agreed the hearing aid is a world-class product extremely well resolved from every perspective… “This product has incredible potential to make a very positive impact on people’s lives who suffer from hearing loss. The use of rechargeable batteries and magnetic coupling is highly innovative”.

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Facett designed by Blamey Saunders. Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018.

It is the world’s first modular hearing aid, which provides unparalleled ease of use, up-gradability options and aesthetic appeal. It also features magnetic modules that click easily into place and simplifies the daily maintenance tasks to be carried out.

The product empowers people with dexterity issues, as well as those who have visual impairment, with independence.  “Every little detail of this product has been meticulously designed with the end use in mind, right down to the magnetic charging case, colour coded units for each ear and carefully considered design aesthetic… a brilliant showcase for Australian design and innovation.”

Meld designs

Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

The Growing Human-Centred Design Across Queensland Government project by Meld Studios involved a journey applying a human-centred design approach to developing a framework for building design capability.

The project represents an exciting future for both systems and service design. It is meant to have a profound and positive impact on our lives.

They produced a solution appropriate for and specific to the context of government making allowances to accommodate a diversity of roles, existing processes, culture and constraints.

Judges’ believe it was a “… total standout project, absolutely inspirational in scope, scale, process, and outcome… a shining example of impeccable human centered service design and the Jury applauded this project at every level”

Fashion Award 1

Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

Fashion Design and Engineering Design alongside the Better World Award, Good Design Team of the Year Award and an Indigenous Designer Award are new awards for 2018.

Recognising the important contribution Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander designers make to Australian design across the spectrum of design disciplines and practice has also been an important addition.

Architecture Design Award

The d’Arenberg Cube, Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

The categories are broad and also include Next Gen, Architectural Design, Interior Design, Urban Design Social Impact, Communication Design, Digital Design, Product Design, Service Design, including Education and Public Sector Services.

Additional Notable accolades include the Next Gen Award, which was won by Ikki the Companion Therapy Robot for Sick Children. It helps children to perform calming and breathing exercises improving clinical outcomes by simplifying the experience for patients, doctors, families and the community.

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Ikki the Companion Therapy Robot for Sick Children Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

The Judges commented “A simply brilliant design concept that has been beautifully designed with the end user in mind. This product has enormous potential to make a positive impact on people’s lives at a time when they need it most.”

The Patron’s Australian Design Award was won by NurseWatch. Then there was the MAAS Design Award won by Fashion Revolution Australia and the 202020 Green Design Award won by the Sydney Park Water Re-Use Project. The Good Design Award® for Sustainability was won by TESLA with their Powerpack – Neoen Hornsdale Wind Farm.

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Neoen Hornsdale Wind Farm by TESLA, Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

The Judges’ Comments: “The Tesla Powerpack installation promotes effective use of different sustainable energy technologies and although the battery technology already existed, the innovation here is about how it has been deployed and the immense scale of the project. Overall, the Jury commends this project and sees it as a really important step in promoting sustainable energy generation in Australia and internationally. We need more shining examples such as this to shift the narrative around energy generation and storage at a time when it is needed most”.

Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle, 2018

2018 Good Design Awards
Good Design Showcase

25 – 27 May 2018

Overseas Passenger Terminal,
Circular Quay, Sydney


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Ikki the Companion Therapy Robot for Sick Children Image courtesy Good Design Australia 2018

The Good Design Showcase Exhibition launches on 25 May, 5.30-7.30pm with an exclusive ticketed preview before it opens to the public.

Good Design Awards 2018 jury list includes: • Dr. Hartmut Esslinger, Founder, frog design • Cheryl, Vanessa and Gabrielle Manning, Co-Founders, Manning Cartell • Stefanie Kubanek, Associate Partner, Pentagram Design • Professor Margaret Petty, Executive Director Innovation & Entrepreneurship, University of Technology, Sydney • Dr. Kourosh Kayvani, Managing Director, Design, Innovation and Eminence, Aurecon • Stephen Todd, Design Editor, Australian Financial Review • Sally Dominguez, Innovation Catalyst, Adventurous Thinking Group • Vince Frost, CEO & Executive Creative Director, Frost* Collective • Steve Coster, Managing Director, HASSELL • Sally Hill, Managing Director, Wildwon • Stephanie Pemberton, Associate Director, Design Thinking, KPMG Australia • Bruce Claxton, Professor, Design Management, Savannah College of Art and Design & former Head of Design, Motorola • Georgina Safe, Fashion Writer & Editor • Kim Hansen, CEO, Impossible • Kasia Wydrowski, Creative Director, K&Co • Jo Pretyman, Founder, I-Manifest • Dr. Oya Demirbilek, Associate Professor, Industrial Design, UNSW • Chris Vanstone, Chief Innovation Officer, The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI) • Terri Winter, Founder and Curator, Top3 By Design • Paul Beranger, Automotive Designer • Cathy Veninga, CEO, The Designers Institute of New Zealand • Dr. Steve Winnall, Product Development Manager, Baraja • Lindy Johnson, Founder & CEO, Lindy Johnson • Ian Muir, Managing Director, IDM Design Labs • Timothy Horton, Registrar, NSW Architects Registration Board • Luciano Papi, Managing Director, Lu Papi And Associates • Tim Riches, Group Strategy Director, Principals • Lester Miller, Principal and Head of Mechanical Engineering, IP Solved • Ben Crothers, Design Educator, Atlassian

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