Essen/Germany, 12. April 2018
Because of Mr. Guanzhong Liu’s criticism, I would like to take this opportunity to
introduce you to the Red Dot Design Award and our way of working.
The success of the Red Dot Design Award is based on a history spanning more than 60 years, dating back to 1955. Since then, the competition has developed to an internationally recognised organisation, in which numerous companies and designers from China participate. That is true. But it is important to emphasise that China and Germany are only two out of a total of 57 nations that have submitted products in 2018 alone and we received 6,300 submissions. But a submission means to any business or designer, regardless of size or provenance, that the products face the toughest design competition in the world. Not more.
Red Dot could only develop itself with success, because we rely on expertise and independence in the evaluation process. That's why every year, we spend an enormous amount of effort and invite internationally recognised experts, who adjudicate, test and evaluate each product live and on site. This year, the jury consisted of 39 experts who use their knowledge to ensure the high quality level of the competition and thus the significance of the Red Dot label. All jury are bound by the Code of Honour, which states that they can not take part in the evaluation of a product if they were involved in its production process.
In addition, no jury member is permitted to be employed by a manufacturing industrial firm. This prevents them from judging their own achievements or the achievements of direct competitors. Bribery or favour are thus excluded.
This strict procedure is the foundation and backbone of our competition, which designers, design bureaus and companies around the world appreciate. The excellent work of the jury is reflected in the results. Out of 6,300 submissions, only 69 entries received the top award "Red Dot: Best of the Best". That's just 1.1 percent of all entries. In addition, the "Red Dot" label for good design quality was awarded only 1,684 times, while 45 objects won a Honorable Mention. Conversely, this means that 4,502 submissions were not awarded because they did not meet the high evaluation standards of the jury.
There is no doubt that the market for good design is highly competitive. That an award like Red Dot is so popular in China is related to our long history, and because the Red Dot seal has proven to be asign of outstanding design over a long period of time and because our label highly is visible on packaging, websites or in business communications of international acclaimed companies.
But the key to this success is the consumer who also knows about the value of the Red Dot label and buys awarded products. Therefore, many companies reward designers for their successful participation in the Red Dot Design Award. They can be sure that they have produced strong goods which will persist on the market.
Since every manufacturing company wants to convince and earn its customers loyalty with good design, they strive for design awards with a serious message. That's why we support design events like the "Xiamen International Design Week" or China Good Design to showcase what makes good design and how it can be relatively valued. This is done in the desire to support the design atmosphere in China and to help China to build abroader communication platform for the industries. Chinese companies should be encouraged by this development to invest in design to compete on the local and international market. Huawei or Lenovo are already very successful all over the world and China will also play a leading role in the electric car market.
But no matter whether Red Dot or China Good Design: no one can force companies and designers to participate in a design competition. The participation is voluntary and we communicate the costs and benefits of the award transparently. That includes information on our jury procedure, our celebrations, the use of the label, PR measures, media services, the Red Dot Museums (Essen/Germany; Marinabay/Singapore; in Autumn 2018 Xiamen/China) and other benefits that we hold ready for the winners.
It should not be forgotten that Red Dot, like any other company, has to assert itself against other design awards. We strive for this with tradition and an internationally established label, a unique judging process, valuable winner benefits and transparency in the structure of the competition. However, we recognise that independent Chinese design awards will develop in a global, free market in the future. Red Dot is not opposed to this development. The decisive factor is and will be which seal of approval for good design has the greatest value for a designer or company.
I hope I was able to eliminate questions and doubts about the Red Dot Design Award. If you want to get to know us better, visit our websites or make your own experiences.
Head of Communications & Public Relations
Red Dot GmbH & Co. KG