National Design Awards

National Design Awards

The National Design Awards, founded in 2000, is funded and awarded by Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. There are seven official design categories, and three additional awards. Supplemental awards can be given at the discretion of the jury or institution.

The seven official design categories are:

  • Architecture Design
  • Communications Design
  • Fashion Design (created in 2003)
  • Interior Design (created in 2005)
  • Interaction Design (created for 2009)
  • Landscape Design
  • Product Design

The three additional awards categories are:

  • Lifetime Achievement
  • Design Patron (created in 2001)
  • Design Mind (created in 2005)

The supplemental categories include:

  • People's Design Award (created in 2006)
  • Special Commendation (Awarded in 2008)
  • Special Jury Commendation (created in 2005, but omitted in 2008)
  • American Original (Awarded in 2000 and 2002 only)

Selection Criteria

The selection criteria for all of the awards are excellence, innovation, and enhancement of the quality of life. Individual candidates must be citizens or long-term residents of the United States and have been practicing design for at least 7 years. Corporations and institutions must have their headquarters in the United States. Honorees are selected for a body of realized work, not for any one specific project.

Candidates are proposed by an official Nominating Committee and are invited to submit materials for a jury's review. Submissions consist of resumes, portfolios, publications by and about the candidates, and professional-quality audio-visual samples.


The jurors are chosen by the museum based on their prominence and expertise in the design world. Once selected, jurors are briefed on the Museum mission and criteria for the Awards. Decisions are asked to be based on the core criteria: excellence, innovation, and contribution to the quality of life. Museum staff does not enter into the selection process.

The jury meets over a two-day period to thoroughly review every submission. The submissions are assessed in terms of the work's relationship to and impact on contemporary life. Special emphasis is placed on the extent to which the nominee's designs and achievements have benefit the general public.


The annual Awards program celebrates design in various disciplines as a vital humanistic tool in shaping the world, and seeks to increase national awareness of design by educating the public and promoting excellence, innovation, and lasting achievement.

The National Design Awards is one of the few programs of its kind structured to continue to benefit the nation long after the Awards ceremony and gala. A suite of educational programs is offered every year in conjunction with the Awards by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum's Education Department. These programs include: lectures, round-tables, workshops, and fairs based on the vision and work of the Awards' winners.

People's Design Award

In 2006, the first ever People's Design Award was created in order to give the general public a chance to nominate and vote for their favorite design.

Individuals can nominate and vote for their favorite designers via the official website.

People's Design Award


Year Winner
Lifetime Achievement Corporate Achievement Architecture Design Communications Design Landscape Architecture Fashion Design Product Design Design Patron American Original People's Choice Design Mind Interior Design Interaction design Special Jury Commendation Design Commendation
2000 Frank Gehry Apple Computer no award Ralph Appelbaum Lawrence Halprin no award Paul MacCready no award John Hejduk and Morris Lapidus no award no award no award no award no award
2001 Robert Wilson Tupperware Peter Eisenman John Maeda Julie Bargmann of D.I.R.T. Studio no award David M. Kelley & IDEO Stanley Marcus no award no award no award no award no award no award
2002 Dan Kiley Whirlpool Corporation Steven Holl Lucille Tenazas James Carpenter no award Niels Diffrient Andre Balazs Geoffrey Beene no award no award no award no award no award
2003 I.M. Pei Target Corporation Billie Tsien and Tod Williams Robert Greenberg Michael Van Valkenburgh Tom Ford Herman Miller Gordon Segal no award no award no award no award no award no award
2004 Milton Glaser Aveda Corporation Rick Joy and Polshek Partnership William A. McDonough and Partners Yeohlee Teng Yves Béhar Amanda M. Burden no award no award no award no award no award no award
2005 Eva Zeisel Patagonia Diller Scofidio + Renfro Stefan Sagmeister Ned Kahn Toledo Studio Burt Rutan Richard M. Daley, Mayor of Chicago no award no award Katherine and Michael McCoy Richard Gluckman Sergio Palleroni no award
2006[1] Paolo Soleri Nike, Inc. Thom Mayne 2x4 Martha Schwartz Maria Cornejo Bill Stumpf Craig Robins no award The Katrina Cottage by Marianne Cusato Paola Antonelli Michael Gabellini Syd Mead no award
2007[2][3] Antoine Predock Adobe Systems Office dA Chip Kidd PWP Landscape Architecture Rick Owens Jonathan Ive Maharam no award TOMS Shoes by Blake Mycoskie Denise Scott Brown and Robert Venturi Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis Frank Ching no award
2008[4] Charles Harrison Google, Inc. Tom Kundig Scott Stowell OLIN Ralph Rucci Antenna Design Architecture for Humanity no award Zon hearing aid by Stuart Karten Design Michael Bierut Rockwell Group no award Janna Bullock
2009[5][6] Bill Moggridge Walker Art Center SHoP Architects The New York Times Graphics Department Hood Design Francisco Costa for Calvin Klein Collection Boym Partners Reynold Levy no award Trek Lime Bike Amory B. Lovins Tsao & McKown Architects no award no award
2010[7] Jane Thompson U.S. Green Building Council KieranTimberlake Stephen Doyle James Corner Field Operations Rodarte Smart Design no award no award The Braille Alphabet Bracelet by Leslie Ligon Ralph Caplan William Sofield no award no award
2011[8] Matthew Carter [9] Knoll Architecture Research Office Rick Valicenti Gustafson Guthrie Nichol J. Mendel Continuum no award no award no award Steven Heller Shelton, Mindel & Associates Ben Fry[10] no award no award

External links


  1. ^ "Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Announces Winners of the Seventh Annual National Design Awards". Cooper-Hewitt. June 5, 2006. Retrieved 2009-10-25. 
  2. ^ "Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Announces Winners of the Eighth Annual National Design Awards". Cooper-Hewitt. May 15, 2007. Retrieved 2009-10-25. 
  3. ^ OZLER, Levent (19 May 2007). "Winners of the Eighth Annual National Design Awards". Retrieved 2010-01-02. 
  4. ^ "Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Announces Winners of the Ninth Annual National Design Awards". Cooper-Hewitt. May 8, 2008. Retrieved 2009-10-25. 
  5. ^ "Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Celebrates Winners and Finalists of the 10th Annual National Design Awards". Cooper-Hewitt. September 21, 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-25. 
  6. ^ VILADAS, PILAR (April 30, 2009). "Scorecard: The National Design Awards". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-01-02. 
  7. ^ "Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Celebrates Winners and Finalists of the 11th Annual National Design Awards". Cooper-Hewitt. June 17, 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-22. 
  8. ^ "Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Announces Winners and Finalists of the 12th Annual National Design Awards". Cooper-Hewitt. May 26, 2011. Archived from the original on 2011-05-29. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  9. ^ "Honoring a Designer Who Gave Computers Their Fonts". The New York Times. May 26, 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  10. ^ Interactive Design, 2011, Ben Fry

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