Baby Box design competition launched

Bold and inspirational designs sought from Scotland’s students.

The competition for the design of Scotland’s baby box has been officially launched, with students across Scotland urged to submit bold and inspirational designs for consideration by an expert panel.

Minister for Childcare and Early Years, Mark McDonald, confirmed that the winning student will receive a prize of £1,000 and exclusive mentoring from leading Scottish designers Holly Fulton and Scott Jarvie.

V&A Museum of Design Dundee will run the national competition on behalf of the Scottish Government, with entries sought from design students throughout Scotland by November 17.

The winning design will be put into production and rolled out on every baby box from Summer 2017 until March 31 2019.

Mr McDonald also confirmed the two areas taking part in the pilot beginning New Year’s Day 2017 will be Orkney and Clackmannanshire.

Speaking at the University of Dundee’s Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design where the competition was launched Mr McDonald said:

“The baby box is an extremely exciting initiative that will play a major role in realising our wider government ambition of giving all our children the best possible start in life.

“It has a proven track record in tackling deprivation, improving health and supporting parents and I look forward to seeing the very real benefits it brings for Scotland’s future generations.

“With that in mind it seems only right that the competition launched today allows Scotland’s next generation of designers to play a key role in the process. This is a fantastic opportunity and I would encourage all students with an interest in design to apply.

“There are over 50,000 babies born in Scotland each year so the winning design will receive fantastic exposure throughout the country. We want these boxes to become a key part of the lives of parents and children so the design needs to be bold and inspirational.

“I am also able to confirm today that Orkney and Clackmannanshire will be the first areas in Scotland to receive a box when the initial pilot begins on New Year’s Day 2017.

“Today’s announcements not only bring us another step closer to the implementation of the baby box, they also take us another step closer to achieving this Government’s bold ambition, that all children should start life on a level playing field.”

Philip Long, Director of V&A Dundee who will be running the competition said:

“This is a remarkable initiative which recognises the essential role good design has in helping everybody's lives from the very beginning. V&A Museum of Design Dundee is proud to be working with the Scottish Government and such outstanding designers as Holly Fulton and Scott Jarvie on this project.

“The design competition for baby boxes will help nurture and promote our next generation of designers, but of especial importance ‎is the help the boxes themselves will give to all new families in Scotland.”

Scott Jarvie, Founder of Jarvie-Design and member of the judging panel attended the launch, he said:

“This initiative recognises the latent potential that design and creative thinking have in effecting transformative change in people's lives. The project has scope to greatly improve infant wellbeing and puts in place the necessary tools to give every child an equal start in life, through the power of design.

“I am pleased to be a part of the selection panel and am very much looking forward to seeing the entries.”

Holly Fulton, Womenswear designer and member of the judging panel said:

“I love the fact Scotland is becoming a design-led country, beginning to look seriously at the way in which design can be used to improve lives, as opposed to it being perceived as a discipline that purely focuses on aesthetic.

“I am delighted to be involved in placing design at the heart of a national health intervention to create a level playing field for future generations.”

Notes to editors

The full design brief including criteria for entry and how to apply is available on request.

The Minister made the announcement during a visit to the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design where he was joined by two other members of the judging panel, Sarah Saunders, Director of Learning and Innovation at V&A Dundee and Scott Jarvie founder of Jarvie-Design.


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