As a complement to our perennial and popular special reports — “People To Watch” (newsmakers) and “Students To Watch” (rising graduates) and “Educators To Watch” (influential teachers) — we have now added “Responsible Designers To Watch” to the editorial mix. Growing organically out of our “Green Design” annual feature into something more inclusive, we are responding to the fact that many designers are embracing responsibility writ large in terms of how, when, why and for whom they work. Being green, I think, is necessary but not sufficient to capture the spirit of the moment. The common thread among these “responsible designers” is that they are leading the charge to use design and communications principles and skills to make the world a better place as they see it. We invite your help in identifying our next round of responsible designers.
And we thank Rolland, a uniquely sustainable fine paper supplier, for sponsoring this report over the years as it evolves naturally from “green” to “sustainable” to “responsible” design.
One other point. In the current polarized political atmosphere, content we include in the magazine and on our website is sometimes misinterpreted as purposefully partisan instead of just plain news. Thus, I am occasionally attacked as a right wing nut and/or left wing nut depending on the day. The “nut” part of the complaint may well be fair. The political charge is unfair: I am an old-fashioned centrist realistic but optimistic about our collective future and GDUSA is a traditional advocate for designers. How does this relate to today’s report? We invited our honored guests to tell us about themselves and their personal journeys, and it turns out most are aligned with progressive causes. I respect that but, for me, it not the main takeaway of the story. GDUSA’s agenda is straightforward: to elevate graphic design to its rightful place in commerce and culture. No more and no less.
– Gordon Kaye, Publisher