What challenges should designers face now, as found at the GOOD DESIGN AWARDs.

FOCUSED ISSUES is a GOOD DESIGN AWARD initiative that depicts the future of design in society through the screening process.



Considering “FOCUSED ISSUES 2023”

Brave Attitude, Organic Design: FOCUSED ISSUES theme decided


This year, GOOD DESIGN AWARD FOCUSED ISSUES has started afresh, with a renewed purpose and process. With a vision of being a “think tank of design,” FOCUSED ISSUES will capture the “wave” of design behind award-winning works and determine a theme every year. The 2023 theme “Brave Attitude, Organic Design” was determined through a series of screening processes. What is the intention of this theme?

This year, GOOD DESIGN AWARD FOCUSED ISSUES has started afresh, with a renewed purpose and process.

With a vision of being a “think tank of design,” it analyzes the “wave” of design behind award-winning works more precisely and aims to play a role in indicating the direction that society should follow. The intentions and details of this change were introduced in the previous article.

The setting of a “theme” symbolizes such a change.

Up until last year, a theme was decided before the screening process began as a set perspective based on which entries were examined. From this year, we will capture and verbalize the “wave” of design during cross-sectional screening and transform it into a theme. Then, the theme will be promoted as a term/phrase that symbolizes the year and a way of making a proposal to society.

Intention: Brave Attitude, Organic Design

In 2023, a months-long screening commenced again starting with the first screening in June. In the screening process, a total of six persons who are in charge of FOCUSED ISSUES, such as a chairperson, vice chairpersons, and FOCUSED ISSUES researchers, have explored the “wave” by looking at all entries from their own specialties and perspectives, apart from the usual screening process.

The title of this article, “Brave Attitude, Organic Design,” was verbalized after a number of discussions.

Seiichi Saito, the chairperson of the screening committee who leads this activity, explains the intention of setting this theme as follows.

The role of design has evolved from creating things that do not exist yet and has been predominantly focusing on improving existing things. “Why” and “I” creating this “now”? Various designs are born by facing such questions with Brave and organic thinking and systems that can adapt to the ever-changing future, and sometimes this offers a bit of improvement and other times a broad and drastic change. We want to show the front and back of design with FOCUSED ISSUES.

Reference: Theme-related award winners

Before extracting the intention of this theme, a number of discussions were made on various entries and award winning works. Here are some of the winning works that were mentioned. I hope this will help you understand the phrase “Brave Attitude, Organic Design.”

The background of the theme will be introduced in another article in this journal. I would also like to write about the process by which six people unanimously said, “Isn’t this phrase the best?”

Based on this theme, each group will compile recommendations including action plans and output them into reports. The process will continue to be reported in this journal. Please stay tuned with FOCUSED ISSUES.

Kazuyuki Koyama


Shunsuke Imai


He was born in Minamiuonuma City, Niigata in 1993. He became independent after working for amana Inc.