VDF microsite on a phone

Virtual Design Festival named event of the year at the IBP journalism awards

Dezeen has picked up two more awards this week with Virtual Design Festival winning event of the year and Dezeen's founder Marcus Fairs receiving the digital leadership prize at IBP's annual journalism awards ceremony.

The prizes come a day after Dezeen won two awards for Virtual Design Festival and another for the Dezeen Day conference.

International Building Press (IBP) judges praised Dezeen for demonstrating "ambition, imagination and creative flair with varied and engaging content" for Virtual Design Festival (VDF), which was the world's first online design festival.

Running from 15 April to 10 July, VDF featured over 500 pieces of content including live talks, performances, cultural collaborations, student shows and product launches. The content has received over 1.75 million page views and two million video plays.

Marcus Fairs wins digital leadership of the year at the IBP Awards 2020
Dezeen founder Marcus Fairs received the digital leadership prize at a virtual IBP Awards ceremony

"With a reduced team and on a modest budget, the organiser put in place a wide range of virtual events, which spoke straight to the interests and concerns of its community," said the IBP Awards jury.

"They quickly and clearly identified where the need might be for sharing information and speedily pulled in an array of impressive, high-profile collaborators."

Marcus Fairs honoured for digital leadership

Fairs was awarded the digital leadership of the year prize for his role in hosting Dezeen's inaugural podcast series Face to Face and launching VDF, in particular the live interviews he conducted daily with top architects and designers as part of VDF's flagship Screentime series of talks.

"Marcus Fairs’ infectious smile shone through all 50 – yes, fifty – interviews he conducted with architects and designers as part of the innovative and highly profitable Virtual Design Festival, and he has even more reason to smile as winner of this award," the jury said.

"Little wonder that Dezeen continues to show impressive growth, turning even the Covid-19 pandemic into an opportunity."

Benedict Hobson collects event of the year award for Dezeen's Virtual Design Festival at IBP Awards 2020
Dezeen's chief content officer Benedict Hobson collected the event of the year award

The awards were presented to Fairs and Dezeen's chief content officer Benedict Hobson at a virtual ceremony on Thursday hosted by British broadcaster and radio presenter Nick Ferrari.

Dezeen receives five awards in a week

The IBP awards are the latest in a haul of accolades Dezeen has received this week.

VDF claimed both the digital initiative of the year and the special coronavirus response prizes at the Professional Publishers Association's annual awards for independent publishers on Wednesday.

Dezeen Day conference was separately honoured at the Conference Awards 2020, receiving a bronze award for best new conference

Dezeen Awards is also shortlisted in three categories at the Awards Awards: best awards event by a publisher; best judging process; and best sector-specific awards event.