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DxB Week: Designers communicating across industries

Posted by Chad O'Connor  October 4, 2013 11:00 AM

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[The We are the Creative Industries series: The Creative Industries - video game companies, design, marketing and architecture firms, and talented people who write books, design houses, shoot movies, make art and record music, just to name a few examples - are an important part of Massachusetts' economy, with $1 billion statewide impact and over 100,000 workers. Click here to learn more.]

The word designer is a growing term in many industries today, and for good reason. I won’t attempt to name every job title with the term designer; frankly, this article has a word limit. Designers have expanded their reach to industries and organizations ranging from healthcare and pharmaceutical, service and entertainment, to investment banking and real estate.

While it’s true the practice of design differs from one profession to another, the goal remains much the same. Regardless of industry, be it brand design (my bias), bridge design, product design or floral design, we have the same objective; designers solve the problems they’re faced with by challenging the status quo.

Great design is most successful when its authors can consider and influence the big picture. Tackling every angle of a problem is the only way to truly solve it. Business for instance, by virtue of shear competition, consumer lifestyle, and the array of communication platforms in the market today, the use of cohesion in outward communication has never been more vital for success. Great design in my industry of branding solves problems best when it tackles communication cohesively to a consumer audience; this means the design direction of written material, graphics, online interaction, video, and the physical environment are all communicating the same message.

But cohesion in design does not start and end with building a brand, marketing an idea, or organizing a project build. The concept of cohesive design practice, where the syncing of the minds, strategy, growth, and craft form a whole is now cross-disciplinary. Events worldwide are proving designers not only crave understanding of each discipline, but also knowledge in the approach. Designers are communicating across industries, promoting new, innovative solutions in communication and ideas never before realized.

We have seen many industries from Architectural to Fashion, from Culinary to Performance, host their own events promoting collaboration, connection, and a dialogue within their respective communities. Yet Boston hasn’t taken the opportunity to celebrate design at the big picture level.

Boston will have its first ever design week October 9th through 13th, 2013. Designers will have the opportunity to learn and express what each of their industries can contribute to another. Design Exchange Boston (DxB) is beginning a new dialogue in our city.

Boston’s Seaport, Fort Point, and Innovation Districts will be hosting the majority of the events held by DxB. Organizations from AIGA, AIA, IIDA, ASID, DMB, BSA, IFDA, IDSA, SEGD, IxDA, and others intend to help mold Boston into a 21st-century city led by the creative economy. DxB will welcome a diverse group of entrepreneurs, professionals, students, educators, retailers, makers & manufacturers, tourists, and design-savvy public.

DxB will include a week of events ranging from open studios, workshops, lectures, parties, and competitions.

Visit DXBOSTON.COM to learn more, volunteer, or attend. To join the conversation on Twitter, follow @DxBoston and #DxB2013.

Michael Luciano Abbate is Lead Designer and Head of Experiential Identity at REPENSO. Check out Michael's work and connect with him at

[We are thankful for Global Business Hub’s support of the Creative Industries. Please note: This article does not necessarily reflect the viewpoints of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development or its Creative Economy Industry Director for the Commonwealth, nor is it an endorsement of any views, products, or opinions contained therein. The author is solely responsible for the content.]

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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