• Why Youth Collaborations Are Better For Brands

    By Eugene Chuang on May 24 , 2017

    This year, Huntington and IKEA are once again collaborating on the IKEA Young Designer Award, a nationwide, tertiary-level product design competition that seeks to improve the way we live at home.

    The search for Singapore’s best young designer continues as the competition opens its doors to foreigners, and aligns with the theme of What Design Can Do, a global design sustainability challenge jointly organized by the IKEA Foundation and the Autodesk Foundation.

    As a branding agency, we have and continue to see a growing importance in championing youth collaborations.

    Positive outcomes from youth engagement

    Research has shown that youth involvement is beneficial to both brands and youth themselves. Programmes that are jointly developed with youth are more likely to be effective at engaging the public and consequently, enjoy a greater impact.

    It is also observed that youth who are involved in the decision-making process increases the likelihood that their decisions and recommendations will be accepted and adopted by the public.

    Perhaps most important of all, studies also show that empowering youth to identify and respond to societal needs shapes them to be more empathetic and insightful individuals, while positively impacting their future careers.

    A case study

    Take the winner of last year’s IKEA Young Designer Award as an example. Mr Loren Lim, an industrial design graduate from the National University of Singapore (NUS) won the votes of the judges with his range of kitchen and dining tools for one-handed individuals.

    Titled ‘Oneware’, the range includes a mat with bumps to hold plates and other utensils in place while they are being scrubbed, and a table pad with a curved surface that makes picking up kitchen utensils easier.

    Loren Lim and his inclusive-oriented solution (1)

    Loren engaged with organizations such as the Disabled People’s Association of Singapore and SG Enablers as part of his research. His spark of genius came when he observed a woman with a congenital arm defect having difficulties handling everyday household chores.

    While it isn’t clear if Loren’s design will go into mass production, his concept has certainly caught the attention of both local and international organizations alike, proving that youth such as himself can positively influence the way we approach the toughest community challenges, while inspiring future generations to adopt a more creative design approach.

    Lim Tian Hwee Loren presenting his inclsuive oriented solution to the judges and audience (1)

    Point for Reflection

    As we move past 2017 and beyond, we believe that youth collaborations are here to stay. It is only a matter of how organizations and agencies can harness the such a partnership for a greater impact for both the brand and the community.

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