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Learning from the Greener Gadget Design Competition

Designers (and marketers) are invited to explore the concept of "Greener Gadgets"

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Greener Gadgets Design Competition

Solutions for Greener Electronics

Designers are invited to explore the concept of "Greener Gadgets" that minimize the environmental impact of consumer electronic devices at any stage in the product lifestyle.

Entries are due Jan. 27, 2008.
Get the details:

Product Design of Green Gadgets

The Greener Gadgets Conference will take place in New York City in February, 2008 -- but the contest applies to everyone who designs products for the "greener" thinking marketplace.

Design Brief

For this competition we're inviting designers to explore the concept of "Greener Gadgets." Designs should seek to minimize the environmental impact of consumer electronic devices at any stage in the product lifecycle. Areas to consider include, but are not limited to, materials, labor, assembly, packaging, transportation, retailing, use and disposal.

Participants are encouraged to consider their designs as part of the entire product ecosystem, and should think as holistically as possible. Designers may choose to focus their entries on a particular area of human enterprise (learning, playing, communicating, etc.), or a particular context (work, home, school, etc.), a particular material, or a specific device. Entries may also seek to create new paradigms for products and services.

Ultimately, we are looking for "great gadgets" of the greener kind.

Judging the Greener Gadget

Entries will be pre-judged by representatives from Core77 and Greener Gadgets. A set of finalists will be selected for final judging LIVE on stage at the Greener Gadgets Conference on February 1st, 2008 in New York City. (Finalists are not required to be in attendance.) Winner and runners up will be determined at the event though a combination of on-stage judging panelists and audience votes.

Product Judging Criteria

Entries will be judged on the following criteria: innovation, clarity of design, originality, form and presentation.

When you think about it...isn't every new product development project a "design contest"? You're competing for your prospect/customer's attention, dollars and loyalty. You're competing against a multitude of other ways they can spend those dollars -- direct competitors and non-direct. And you're competing to bring the project in at a budget you can afford -- and will leave some room for profit.

Design is becoming more and more important. And design is not easy. It is constantly shifting because of marketplace trends, your supply chain realities...and our cultural bias for change, innovation and "new!".

Making design your friend is as important as making change your friend. It's here. It's real. It's going to take a chunk of your budget. Learning to innovate is important -- but learning to innovate successfully is critically important.

Participating in design contests is a great way to practice, to sharpen your skills, and to reap the rewards of not only an occasional "win", but your exercise in terms of new design contacts, new skills for your team, and new awareness of who you're competing with in the real world of the marketplace. When you look at design competitions that way -- you can't lose!


All winners may be required to participate in press initiatives including the following:

- Names and winning concepts to be incorporated in all PR outreach and press materials surrounding the Greener Gadgets competition.

- Winner and Runners Up will each be required to submit a headshot and bio for press use.

And don't forget the last task (and benefit) of design: publicity. New is the best headline of all! People want to keep up with their field and they want to know what new gadget will help them do their job better, faster, slicker. Your design achievements can be an integral part of your green marketing strategy!

PS: You can also use these guidelines (Design Brief, Judging Criteria, Who Judges, and Publicity Potential) to spec and guide your own internal design projects -- be they logos, packaging or core products!

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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