Fuller Challenge in the New York Times
In a recent New York Times article by former Fuller Challenge Juror Alice Rawsthorn, the Fuller Challenge was referenced as contributing to “the reinvention of design practice from a predominantly commercially driven discipline into one that also pursues social, political and ecological objectives.”
The article focused on “the world’s richest design prize”, INDEX: Award, which was founded 10 years ago by the Danish government and seeks to award “design that improves life”. The INDEX: Award gives $100,000 prizes to 5 winners annually, totaling a $500,000 contribution to the field of contemporary design. BFI’s Fuller Challenge awards $100,000 to one winner annually, and in recent years has received over 400 entrants annually. Among these entrants, the Semi-finalists, Finalists, and Winner demonstrate closest adherence to the Fuller Challenge’s seven criteria: Visionary, Comprehensive, Anticipatory, Ecologically Responsible, Feasible, Verifiable, and Replicable.
The article suggested that the INDEX: Award as well as the Fuller Challenge are contributing to one of “the most important developments in contemporary design: the reinvention of design practice from a predominantly commercially driven discipline into one that also pursues social, political and ecological objectives”.
This “reinvention of design practice” has allowed for the expansion of the definition of design, as well as the amplification of certain objectives, such as environmental responsibility or social justice.
“Even Fuller, the most prominent design activist of the 20th century, was routinely dismissed as a crank by the design establishment. But the Fuller challenge and the INDEX: Award have helped to raise awareness of design’s potential to address urgent issues like inequality and climate change,” said Rawsthorn.