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The Brexit Design Manifesto: Add Your Voice

SEEN is pleased to witness that the UK’s design sector is marshalling many notable alumni of design and architecture disciplines across the UK to emphasise the importance of UK design in the world, following Brexit.

The Brexit Design Manifesto was launched in September 2016. Signatories include Thomas Heatherwick, Terence Conran, Richard Rogers, Jasper Morrison, Ilse Crawford, Alice Rawsthorn, The Crafts Council and many more. More signatories are needed to add weight to this important issue.

UK design is one of this country’s great exports, responsible for generating £71.7 billion for the economy, employing 1.5 million people and acting as global ambassadors for this nation’s extraordinary expertise. Though London is a design capital, 60% of UK designers live outside the capital city. From Thomas Chippendale to Zaha Hadid, the UK has forged a distinctive visual style that is recognised world-wide and informs us, as a nation, of who we are; from huge architectural projects like Reichstag in Germany, to the improvement of our own infrastructure, UK design is a world leader.

During its membership of the EU, many designers were drawn here by the openness and connections of our design industries, adding immeasurably to our economic and cultural life. But what will happen in a post-Brexit world? The edge that EU membership has given the UK will be lost.

The Brexit Design Manifesto has identified 5 key areas in which the UK government can help the UK design industry survive the transition and continue to thrive: Recognition of the significance of the design sector and the need to maintain connections; Education of future generations of designers; Recruitment of the best and the brightest from home and abroad, and the retention of EU employees already working here; Manufacturing policies to encourage and strengthen UK industries; and Intellectual Property legislation to ensure the protection of new ideas. SEEN supports the manifesto wholeheartedly and encourages our readers to do the same.

You can read the Brexit Design Manifesto in full here.