World Design Impact Prize 2013-2014

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By Lorrin Windahl.

The World Design Impact Prize (WDIP) runs on the premise that many of the world’s societal challenges have already been solved but that these solutions remain unrecognised or untapped. The aim of the prize is to bring existing solutions to the fore amongst a wider community, in the hope of accelerating their uptake.

The prize is an initiative of the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) and is held biennially. The three finalists for the 2013-2014 prize have recently been announced.

The first finalist is the ABC Syringe designed by David Swann. According to the submission, the reuse of syringes is still a major issue with 40% of injections worldwide given with reused needles or syringes that haven’t been sterilised. The ABC Syringe changes colour after use so that there is a visual indicator to highlight that it has been used. In their words, the syringe “makes invisible risk, visible“.

ABC Syringe1

The single use ABC Syringe provides a visual indicator to illustrate that it has been used. Image courtesy of worlddesignimpact.org

The second finalist is the BioLite HomeStove by BioLite. This biomass fuelled stove uses a patented thermoelectric fan technology to help reduce the impact of cooking smoke. It also provides additional electricity that can be used to power lights or recharge batteries. The stove is aimed at developing countries where serious health issues and even deaths are still attributed to cooking smoke inhalation.

The BioLite HomeStove provides a healthier and safer cooking alternative for developing countries. Image courtesy of biolitestove.com

The BioLite HomeStove provides a healthier and safer cooking alternative for developing countries. Image courtesy of biolitestove.com

The third finalist is the Refugee Housing Unit by the RHU Design Team. You may recall these shelters as I wrote about them in the post last year, IKEA: the global furniture giant shows its softer side. The shelters are a more durable, long lasting and functional alternative to the traditionally used canvas tent. They come flat packed (no surprise given IKEA is involved), can be assembled without tools and provide electricity by flexible solar panels on the roof.

The Refugee Housing Unit is more durable, long lasting and functional than its canvas tent predecessor. Image courtesy of worlddesignimpact.org

The Refugee Housing Unit is more durable, long lasting and functional than its canvas tent predecessor. Image courtesy of worlddesignimpact.org

The winner of the prize will be announced in Cape Town on February 28th 2014. To learn more about these finalists or any of the other entries head to the World Design Impact Prize website.

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