The Fourth Annual SEED Awards for Excellence in Public Interest Design are sponsored by Design Corps and the  Social Economic Environmental Design® (SEED) Network – in conjunction with our 2014 partner, Parsons The New School for Design. The Awards recognize 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 are selected and celebrated. Winning projects receive a $1,000 honorarium and an all-expense-paid trip for one team representative to present at the annual Structures for Inclusion (SFI 14) conference, taking place March 22 + 23, 2014 in New York City.


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

  1. Products;
  2. Places; such as buildings, landscapes, and other environments
  3. Processes; such as services, systems, business practices, or public policies

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 juried, third-party review.

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?

Download the 2014 SEED Call for Entries Press Release.