Design Corps and Social Economic Environmental Design® (SEED) Network – in conjunction with our 2015 partner, the Lawrence Technological University – are pleased to announce the Fifth Annual SEED Awards for Excellence in Public Interest Design.

Recognizing design projects with exceptional social, economic, and environmental impact, the SEED Awards represent the forces needed to create truly sustainable projects and positive change in the world.

Through a competitive jury process, six projects will be selected and celebrated. Winning projects will receive a $1,000 honorarium and an all-expense-paid trip for one team representative to present at the annual Structures for Inclusion (SFI 15) conference, taking place April 11 – 12, 2015 in Detroit, MI. Funding provided by the Lawrence Technological University and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Awards Eligibility Three broad categories of projects that have been designed or redesigned for the public good are considered:

  • Products
  • Places such as buildings, landscapes, and other environments
  • Processes such as services, systems, business practices, or public policies

Application Deadline: Thursday, November 20, 2014 by 11:59 pm EST
Winners Announced: Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Awards Presented: Structures for Inclusion Conference, April 11 – 12, 2015, Detroit, MI

SEED Awards Jurors
Susan Szenasy: Publisher / Editor in Chief, Metropolis Magazine
Jason Roberts: Creative Director of Team Better Block
Wes Janz: Professor of Architecture at Ball State University, Founder of onesmallproject.org
Cathy Lang Ho: Commissioner and Lead Curator of the U.S. Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale, “Spontaneous Interventions”

Selection Criteria & Questions
SEED is a common standard to guide, evaluate and measure the social, economic and environmental impact of design projects.

The Awards use the SEED Evaluator Application to collect information about projects. The evaluator is a communication tool that allows communities to define goals for design projects and then measure the success in achieving these through a third-party review by a jury.

Entries are judged based on how well they address the following questions:

Participation: How and to what extent have community members and stakeholders been involved in the design and planning processes?
Effectiveness: How and to what extent does the project address the community’s critical needs and challenges?
Excellence: How and to what extent does the project achieve the highest possible design quality, relate with its context, and dignify the experiences of those it touches?
Inclusiveness: How and to what extent does the project promote social equity as well as reflect a diversity of social identities and values.
Impact: How and to what extent are the social, economic, and environmental impacts of the project known and being measured?
Systemic: How and to what extent might the project or process be scaled up to have a broader impact?