Today, we announced the 1,560 winners of the 2022 GOOD DESIGN AWARD. On behalf of the Japan Institute of Design Promotion (JDP), which sponsors this award, I extend my sincere congratulations to all the winners. I'd also like to applaud everyone who supported the award recipients, whose encouragement-as well as the winners' own tireless efforts-helped bring these designs to fruition.
The number of entries we received this year was 5,715, which is close to last year's record number of entries. This indicates that our society continues to have high expectations for design, and that those who engage with design everyday remain strongly committed to perfecting it.
Through the GOOD DESIGN AWARD, we discover designs that build a better future and promote them around the world. Our hope is that these activities also ensure the continuous creation of new designs. Based on this year's theme, "From Cross-Interaction Toward Symphony," we were able to find many designs that address social issues and needs. We believe these designs bring users joy and relief by improving their lives.
Those whose submissions did not receive the award this year also have my utmost respect, for their commitment to their work and deep understanding of the importance of design.
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Mr. Takashi Ashitomi and Mr. Seiichi Saito (Chairperson and Vice Chairperson of the Judging Committee) and the approximately 90 members of the committee for their efforts in finding great designs.
Looking ahead, we will promote the winning designs through the GOOD DESIGN EXHIBITION 2022 and other platforms. We are also preparing to select the winner of the GOOD DESIGN GRAND AWARD on November 1. We look forward to sharing more information about these events. Thank you for your continued support.
Congratulations on winning the GOOD DESIGN AWARD.
There were 5,715 entries this year. The number of applications was almost the same as that of last year when it increased by about 1,000. I feel the growing awareness and momentum of people who want to improve their lives and society through design. This year's GOOD DESIGN AWARD focuses on the theme "From Cross-Interaction toward Symphony" based on our idea that the symphony of these people's willpower and creativity will increase the power of design many times.
As a result, the number of GOOD DESIGN AWARD awarded works was over 1500. I was impressed that the number of designs to eliminate various "gaps" increased, while that of designs useful for daily life during the COVID-19 pandemic also increased. Gaps are manifested by distinctions and divisions. However, I realized that there is a potential gap that I am not aware of.
For example, UNI-ONE is seated hands-free mobility that eliminates the physical and psychological gap between wheelchair users and people without physical disabilities. Wheelchair users and people without physical disabilities are unaware of their differences when using UNI-ONE.
Magical Dagashiya Tyrol-Do is also one of them. It provides a place where any child can get support without being concerned about differences in their environment, by eliminating consciousness of helping and being helped, through the intervention of an in-store currency called "Tyrol."
What UNI-ONE and Tyrol-Do have in common is the elimination of unconscious "gaps" by rendering physical or economic distinctions and divisions meaningless. This differs from traditional universal design and welfare activities that are altruistic designs just to help the vulnerable live.
I feel the same concept in LinkBuds. People with visual impairments can stroll around using LinkBuds and getting online information. This is made possible by not only open-ear headphones, but also a non-visual interface that can be operated by tapping the fingers around the ear.
Gaps are synonymous with walls, frames, and ditches. Eliminating them means creating a flat state with good visibility. That's where the fluidity of all things will increase, and people's "From Cross-Interaction toward Symphony" will become even more active.
Mask wearing and social distance have created new gaps during the pandemic. On the other hand, remote work has eliminated geographic separation. The key to design is to find out whether these losses or gains are good or not. We have lost and gained. Through the results of this year's awards, I feel that there is an even greater need for designs that eliminate tangible and intangible gaps so that all people can have comfortable lives.
Congratulations on your winning the GOOD DESIGN AWARD.
This year, I have encountered many good designs reflecting 2022. I feel that we have found a compass for what good designs should be, through active readings and discussions by the judges under the theme of "From Cross-Interaction toward Symphony."
Designs that belong to the present time are based on an attitude of to what extent society, and the people and activities in society, can be seen at high resolution in the entire world, and then making various "wills" that exist there interact with each other and resonate. This attitude is shown in a wide variety of submitted designs in various fields.
There are many excellent attempts and products in domains that might traditionally be recognized as the small economy. Designers have confronted people and things head-on, analyzed them, and implemented them in their designs, incorporating their own perspectives. Magical Dagashiya Tyrol-Do, an activity supporting the growth of children in local communities; Ashirase, a walking navigation system; and Vilhelm Hertz, a walking stick, are successful examples in fields that are considered difficult to develop and enter as a business because of the market scale and other factors. I feel that effective ecosystems are created by adjusting the business size and devising ways to manufacture things even in these fields.
I have also encountered great attempts by companies that target large markets. Cordless Stick Cleaner PV-BH900SK, a cleaner; Xbox Adaptive Controller / Xbox Series X / S, game console controllers; and AE-M3/M10/M3V, micro-injection molding machines are products modified according to various needs and trends, including sustainability. The companies consider, discuss, and understand the needs and trends for their already-released products, and change their manufacturing or development approaches. They propose what designs should be now and in the future, with their messages to society as a company.
What is the definition of design? It has been discussed in various situations. Through this year's GOOD DESIGN AWARD screening, I have come to realize that the definition of design is exactly action with consideration in society. The desire to make everyone's life better. To deliver good results to everyone as much as possible. And to value lives more, including things in the world. I hope that the award-winning designs will give you a sense that good design is to design products and services with this kind of cross-interaction, to use them, and to participate in the process, even if a little.