The Seoul Metropolitan Government has won the gold of IDEA/Brazil 2010 Awards, a coveted international design competition in South America, in the category of design strategy and environment for its design-related policy in recognition of Mayor Oh Se-hoon's exemplary leadership in promoting design in overall city administration and urban development.
IDEA/Brazil is the South American chapter of the International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA), one of the three most prestigious awards for designers in the world along with iF and Red dot of Germany. IDEA/Brazil Awards are conducted every year with the validation of the Industrial Design Society of America (IDSA).
Joice Joppert Leal, executive-director of the Objecto Brasil Association, main organizer of the IDEA/Brazil Awards, said that the citation is for Mayor Oh's contribution to upgrading the city brand value of Seoul though his design policy. In particular, Seoul City established the Design Seoul Headquarters as an organization of the city government, which has implemented various design-related projects. He even recruited a design expert as the Chief Design Officer (CDO) responsible for the city's design policies. Oh's such move is believed to strengthen the city's international competitiveness and improve the quality of life of citizens, she was quoted as saying.
The city's such efforts have made Seoul won the title of World Design Capital 2010 from the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design in 2007. In celebration of its designation of WDC 2010, Seoul hosted/will host several events including the annual Seoul Design Fair, World Design Capital Summit that induced cooperation among leaders of world cities, Seoul International Design Workshop that helped cultivate design manpower, and the like.
Seoul City has also strengthened design infrastructure. Some of the examples are the Seoul Design Committee, set up and operated by the city, and the creation of the design guidelines and typeface of Seoul that apply to urban design. In addition, Dongdaemun Design Plaza is being built at the site of the former Dongdaemun Stadium, which is expected to be completed by 2012.
Seoul City said the gold award from IDEA/Brazil signifies that its design policy has gained recognition even from countries in South America and will serve as a momentum to further upgrade the city brand value of Seoul, the World Design Capital 2010.