Design is the link between creativity and innovation. Design thinking converts
creative ideas into tangible products and services for society at large.
Design plays a central role in socio-economic development. In my
opinion, the aim of good design should be to improve the quality of life
for the masses through products and services that are accessible to all
individuals and not just the privileged few.
In recent times, the rapid spread of consumerism and induced needs
has brought about a disharmony in ecological balance and generated
a social divide between the privileged and underprivileged. Therefore,
my focus at the National Institute of Design (NID) is on fostering the
culture of responsible design to improve quality of life for the masses.
Currently, I place professional emphasis on responsible and value-centric
design education. The focus is on issues of ethics, ecology, sustainability,
universal access and equality. It is the role of the designer to harness
contextual ingenuity to bridge the gap and restore social harmony. A
focused design policy direction for the country should include a vision
that incorporates eco-concerns for sustainable and economic growth.
It is also important to develop a link between design education and
culture to make it contextual globally and locally through knowledge and
research based programmes.
While the role of Indian design in the global context cannot be over
emphasized, it is also imperative to protect our own identity and our
heritage. The programs and faculty at NID work with artisans and
craftspeople in rural areas to merge tacit indigenous knowledge and
merge it with documented explicit knowledge.
The curriculum at NID recognizes that design is an amalgamation of art,
science, medicine, technology and commerce. NID’s design education
is trans-disciplinary in nature and integrates a variety of attitudes and
conceptual approaches to design. My focus is to build NID as a diverse
institution with foundations for a comprehensive multi-dimensional
learning environment. The industry project forms the final ‘capstone’
wherein students acquire ‘real world’ experience in design by executing
a project from idea to implementation. It also allows students to interact
with various sub-sections of society and nurtures in them a sensitivity
and empathy towards grass-roots social issues.
I take great pride in the creative achievements of all the talented
graduates of 2009. I wish each and every ‘Young Designer’ a
prosperous and fulfilling future as they strive towards their personal
and professional aspirations.