iF design award
January 2020

Roman joins iF design award jury

Being a jury member of one of the world's most prestigious design awards.

Last week, I returned back from Hamburg, where I was invited to join the international jury of the iF Design Award. While in recent years my colleagues Matthis and Johannes have had the opportunity to contribute their expertise and views as jury members of the iF design award, I was the one given this honor this year.

On Tuesday evening, when I arrived at the event venue, I mingled with the other 77 jury members coming from all parts of the world. Lots of new but also many known faces, met colleagues and friends. Some I have had the pleasure working with, others I got to know in the US while serving as juror of another design award.

Entering the amazing, beautifully restored warehouse in the Hamburg harbour, where all the 7000+ products were displayed for judging, was a very special moment to me personally.

FLUID at iF design 2020 3

FLUID at iF design 2020 2

That evening, we were given a first overview and a warm welcome by the IF CEO Ralph Wiegmann and the head of jury Prof. Fritz Frenkler. During the seated dinner at this impressive location, we learned that we were part of the 25th anniversary of the iF Design Award and also the last round of jurors who would judge in Hamburg.

FLUID at iF design 2020 dinner3

The following intense days we got totally immersed into all the products we had to explore as judges. Each team of three international designers and specialists was assigned to three product categories - from household, audio, TV, software, service to healthcare and transportation.

The sheer amount of products that need to be evaluated is overwhelming. It is a real challenge to stay focused and clear enough to judge all entries thoroughly and only award the best ones with the prestigious IF Design Awards. What really helped us in the process was the ongoing and productive exchange and vivid discussions between all the designers and team members.

From now on, the iF looks forward to new beginnings: this year the IF Design Award ceremony and all iF Design Award events will for the first time take place in Berlin at the Friedrichstadt Palast on one the largest stages in Europe. There you will get a full disclosure of our work as jurors and our results.

I believe and hope that we did a pretty good job together as a design jury. It was a very enriching and inspiring experience and I hope to be back sometime in the coming years.

by Roman Gebhard
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