The Designers Accord is a global coalition of designers, educators, and business leaders working together to create positive environmental and social impact. Adopters of the Designers Accord commit to five guidelines that provide collective and individual ways to integrate sustainability into design. The Designers Accord provides a participatory platform with online and offline manifestations so that members have access to a community of peers who share methodologies, resources, and experiences around environmental and social issues in design.


Our focus is on creating positive impact in the creative community by connecting a broad network throughout the creative community, inspiring and motivating our members to share best practices, bold ideas, and compelling case studies, and enabling new initiatives to grow from the foundation built by the Designers Accord.


The Designers Accord is a five year project that started in June 2007. Our aim is to make sustainability a mainstream idea in all aspects of design practice and production in this project timeline by empowering the global creative community in the following ways:
    Goal 1: Increase awareness in the creative community Engage all members of the creative community in a dialogue about the importance of integrating the principles of sustainability in all practice and production. Connect and empower those applying principles of sustainability in their companies and organizations through a rich on and offline support network. Key Activities
    • Hold regular real-world gatherings and events
    • Communicate regularly with the community to share information
    • Partner with media outlets to share best practices
    • Shape professional recruiting practices
    Key Indicators and Metrics
    • Increase number of broadly published case studies
    • Help all major design awards programs integrate a statement of sustainability in their criteria of evaluation
    • Facilitate a Designers Accord presence at major conferences and events

    Goal 2: Evolve design education and support professional development Graduate the next generation of design thinkers and leaders by providing a toolkit for bringing sustainability to all aspects of undergraduate and graduate design programs so that the next generation of designers is able to practice sustainably. Key Activities
    • Connect with educators and thought-leaders through one-on-one meetings and roundtable events
    • Convene a Global Summit on the topic of Design Education and Sustainability
    • Foster a broader collaboration with schools
    Key Indicators and Metrics
    • Gather best practices from design educators and disseminate them in order to modify, update, and add curriculum to existing design programs, and/or initiate new programs
    • Engage key faculty, administrators, and students to help enable change
    • Help establish strong student organizations
    Support professional development by transforming the anecdotal success stories of design and sustainability into codified and distributed best practices. Key Activities
    • Coordinate a series of Town Hall meetings, and face-to-face events to encourage open conversation
    • Coordinate a series of professional education workshops
    Key Indicators and Metrics
    • Publish sustainability trends / key concerns
    • Actively disseminate tools, training, and materials
    • Create an archive of the Designers Accord (as a project)

    Goal 3: Influence policy through design thinking Bring the power of systems thinking to policy discussion. Increasing relevance of design thinking in higher order strategic challenges. Key Activities
    • Create additional partnerships with compatible organizations (Net Impact, ASHEE, B Corporation)
    • Tighten linkages with professional organizations and corporations
    Key Indicators and Metrics
    • Support the inclusion of the designer’s voice and perspective alongside those of lobbyists and economists in the creation of local, regional, and public policy