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Cape Town launches preparations for World Design Capital 2014

Cape Town calls for submissions for its year as World Design Capital 2014

News: a call for submissions of events and activities for Cape Town's stint as World Design Capital next year was launched during the Design Indaba conference and expo in the city last week.

Cape Town Design, the not-for-profit organisation set up to organise the programme, officially opened its first call for submissions during Design Indaba last week and designers have until 5 April to send in their proposals. The second and final call for submissions will open in July.

Proposals must be submitted online through the official website, after which a panel will select the ideas that best address the themes of social inclusion, African innovation and sustainability.

As the first African city to be chosen as World Design Capital, Cape Town is planning a programme of design-focused events throughout 2014 to draw attention to its efforts to use design for social, cultural and economic development.

Cape Town's winning bid, based on the slogan "Live Design. Transform Life", is focused on socially responsible design and how design could be used to tackle the huge imbalances in South African society.

The South African capital beat off competition from shortlisted rivals Bilbao and Dublin to be named World Design Capital back in 2011, following in the footsteps of previous winners Helsinki, Seoul and Turin.

Dezeen was in Cape Town last week during Design Indaba, where we filmed a movie with the conference's founder Ravi Naidoo – find out more about Dezeen and MINI World Tour, which continues throughout 2013.

See all news and architecture from Cape Town »

Photograph shows World Design Capital 2014 flags flying in Cape Town.

Here's more information from Cape Town Design:

Cape Town's bid to be World Design Capital 2014 forms part of a broader vision to transform Cape Town, through design, into a sustainable, productive African city, bridging historic divides and building social and economic inclusion.

Cape Town was designated World Design Capital 2014 at the International Design Alliance (IDA) Congress in October 2011 in Taipei. This prestigious designation is bestowed biennially by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID). World Design Capitals recognise the value of design thinking, and are dedicated to using design as tool for social, cultural and economic development. Previous winners have been Helsinki, Seoul and Turin, and Cape Town won the 2014 bid against fierce competition from rival shortlisted cities, Bilbao and Dublin.

Winning the bid means that Cape Town gets to play host to a number of World Design Capital Signature Events during 2014, including an International Design House Exhibition, International Design Policy Conference and an International Design Gala, to name a few. This is good news for Cape Town, not just in terms of a boost in visitor numbers, but also because there will be loads of opportunities for our creative communities to get involved as exhibitors, speakers, delegates, partners and suppliers. Not to mention a myriad of inspiring events for all citizens to experience. Importantly, World Design Capital means that local initiatives will get the benefit of the global spotlight during 2014. Think more media, more exposure and many great networking possibilities.

The central theme behind the city’s successful bid, “Live Design. Transform Life”, focused on the role that design can play in social transformation in the city. It sets the tone and will now form the foundation for the development of an inspiring programme of World Design Capital-themed events and projects. Under the overarching theme, four themes have been developed to bring clarity and simplicity to the process of submission and curation of proposals – and later, to help to allocate content and to attract potential sponsors to the various platforms and WDC 2014 Signature Events. The themes are also designed to ignite the imagination of the public, and to contribute towards a greater understanding of the multi-faceted nature of design.