Design is more important than you think

The book 'Small Studio' edited by Jianping He, introducing the current condition of global small design studios

The book ‘Small Studio’ edited by Jianping He, introducing the current condition of global small design studios

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In observing our everyday surroundings it becomes apparent everything is intrinsic to design – from the hat on your head, to a mug in your hand; a car on the road, to a house on the corner. We live in a physical construct that is designed by us in every

In observing our everyday surroundings it becomes apparent everything is intrinsic to design – from the hat on your head, to a mug in your hand; a car on the road, to a house on the corner. We live in a physical construct that is designed by us in every dimension and space. In the business world, it is no different.

 
Graphic design is a strong, effective and universal, visual language. It comprises of various elements inter-connected with one another— international cultural communication between countries, market-oriented commercial development of enterprises, as well as individual and collective needs for social improvement. It is a visual language used in many ways as a form of expression to deliver a holistic message of a brand, community, individualism and many more. It is a vehicle for tackling business and social issues to deliver positive influence across the matter. Therefore, graphic design industry becomes an imperative part of worldwide cultural and creative industry.

 
Graphic Design has evolved rapidly and is now very much a global business. The UK, US, Holland and Japan are recognised as leaders in innovating the graphic design industry adopting diverse strategies and new business modeling. Recent trends indicate that developing countries such as Brazil, China and Thailand are increasingly adapting to utilise this creative industry to increase cultural diversity and international communication opportunities. Interestingly, geographical positioning appears to alter how Graphic Design is utilised. The industry is deeply influenced by the local development of politics, economy, culture and the business environment.

 
In regards to communication, graphic design succeeds in pushing boundaries and increasing the possibility of collaboration across varying disciplines. Undoubtedly graphic design has evolved in its influence on numerous fronts; be it altering governmental policies, re-equating the balance of access to support services, as well as increasing an understanding and acceptance of new technologies. As a result of globalization and localization, small and medium size graphic design enterprises are able to accelerate the development of the graphic design industry and to incubate innovation opportunities within this sector.

 
Scale is accepted as one of the most important factors in evaluating the scope for business development in various industries. In graphic design there are various tools to measure the scale of business growth, such as the number of employees, office locality, as well as the type of client a business attracts. Growth in terms of size and speed are commonly accepted as a development objective for the future direction of numerous small and medium size graphic design enterprises worldwide. It is particularly evident in China, as indicated by the sharp increase in the number of graphic design companies who now seek commercial expansion in order to survive in a highly competitive market.

 
However, a large scale business does not guarantee the sustainable development of the graphic design industry. It requires corresponding factors to facilitate these sizable operations such as human resources, fluid finances, internal and external management collaboration, and, particularly in China, preferential government policy. The blind pursuit of increasing the scale of these organisations would decrease the competency of small and medium size graphic design business. Hence, growth of operational scale may not be the only method for small and medium size graphic design enterprises in achieving sustainable development. Indeed, maintaining a comparatively small scale business model could also be an effective strategy to survive and sustain in this increasingly saturated market.

 

 

Edited by: Emma Berg