It’s that magical time, when creatives from across South Africa and beyond gather in the mother city to celebrate great design in all its shapes and forms. This year, with Cape Town named World Design Capital, the Design Indaba expo and conference events are all the more special.

Building on last year’s successful ‘DRC’ or ‘Democratic Republic of Design’ campaign (a virtual country where design is currency), Absa, one of Design Indaba’s headline sponsors, has taken the concept up a notch – creating a platform to stimulate creative inspiration and give South African designers an opportunity to bring their innovative and ground-breaking designs to life.

The aim of the campaign is to demonstrate that design can be the backbone of a country and help it to prosper, because when good design ideas become tangible – when people act on them – everybody in a society benefits.

So as the campaign name ‘Make think become DID’ suggests, Absa are encouraging conference participants to make their ideas a reality by acting on them – and the first step towards activation is sharing. The DRD app from 2013 will again come into play this year as delegates are encouraged to share their design ideas via Twitter and in doing so earn Design Dollars, to be redeemed at the DID store. Participants who visit the DID store can also vote on which ideas they like best, giving idea generators valuable insights from their creative counterparts.

To get delegates started with idea generation, Absa has put together a list of design challenges (that can be found in the app), from how to solve the problem of shack fires to the disappearing USB.
In addition to this, and to keep things intriguing, each day, one participant stands a chance to win a professionally rendered schematic drawing of their idea. The overall prize, for the most promising idea, includes a schematic drawing, real-life prototype and trademark of the design.

As another great feature of this campaign, a hub of illustrators, guided by Ideso Industrial Design Solutions will turn each idea shared into a concept illustration, which can then be ordered through the app, to be printed onto a range of items for sale at the DID store.

Sound good? If you’re heading to Design Indaba conference this week, why not take up Absa’s challenge to help create a better, more prosperous world – through design.

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