Istanbul has been unveiled by the International Design Alliance (IDA) as the host city of the 2013 IDA Congress. The city was selected unanimously by the IDA Executive Committee based on the strength of its bid, led by Istanbul Technical University (ITU) during an international competitive bid process.
"Istanbul is a living design lab," said Dr. Alpay Er, Head of the Department of Industrial Product Design at ITU and leader of the 2013 bid. "The city is experiencing a 'design renaissance' characterised by increasing internationalisation, rapid expansion and the diversification of design education. All of this is being built on 19th century roots, when our fine and applied arts schools began to flourish, and an even longer tradition of a 'design gate' as East and West met in Istanbul to trade not only goods, but styles and trends, between civilisations for ages. The IDA's selection of Istanbul and ITU is a moment to celebrate. We are deeply excited and fully dedicated to hosting the IDA Congress in our beloved city."
The IDA Congress is the primary event for dialogue between designers and non-design stakeholders in a summit format. The aim of the IDA Congress is to bring together the unified voice of designers around the world in a themed framework to advance the vision and mission of the IDA by engaging government leaders (commerce, trade, culture, etc.), INGO's, business, science and technology, education and the social sciences (ethnography, sociology, etc.).
Istanbul was selected by the IDA Executive Committee, which consists of nine representatives from the three international partner organisations: Mark Breitenberg, Icsid President (United States); Russell Kennedy, Icograda President (Australia); Shashi Caan, IFI President (United States); Prof. Soon-In Lee, Icsid President Elect (Korea); Julia Leimei Chiu, Icograda President Elect (Japan); Joe Pettipas, IFI President Elect (Canada); Michelle Berryman, Icsid Board Member (United States); Iva Babaja, Icograda Vice President (Croatia); and Madeline Lester, IFI Past President (Australia).
"With more than 3000 years of history, Istanbul is a crossroads for culture, finance and industry," said Mark Breitenberg, Icsid President. "The IDA Executive Committee was impressed by ITU's lively bid presentation and the weaving of this north/south, east/west intersection into a compelling theme, 'Design Dialects'."
ITU's Department of Industrial Product Design has a strong track record of collaboration with local and global partners, including Belgium, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Korea, Sweden and the United Kingdom, amongst others. Its research strength includes more than 100 post-graduate students of diverse design and professional backgrounds. ITU has been an Icsid member since 2001 and has been an active contributor to the World Design Survey.
"The Istanbul bid team demonstrated a clear understanding of the IDA Congress objectives through design-based collaboration across and between disciplines," commented Russell Kennedy, Icograda President. "Throughout the selection process, they captured our imagination and impressed us with their thinking. Under the banner of the Istanbul Design Alliance, they are aiming to unite not only design practitioners and educators, but also government, key industry players and NGO's to carry this thinking forward."