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Design education 2018-01-30

How global fashion design schools are changing the Indian landscapes?

By 2020, the potential market for design in India is expected to be INR 188.32 billion.

By Avi KeswaniCo Founder

The India Design Council (IDC) from March 2009 is spearheading the national design direction and is working with other government agencies, the design community, industry, and education institutions to promote design in business, society and public services and developing design excellence. Since then fashion education sector is booming. The appeal of fashion as a career opportunity has grown enormously leading more and more young people to pursue fashion education. Design in India has matured over the years and is booming. By 2020, the potential market for design in India is expected to be INR 188.32 billion. From 2010, the number of design institutions has grown to over 70% by 2016. A well-trained session on the positive demographics, rising educational aspirations, openness to pursuing alternate careers, employment opportunities and increased affordability of higher education, is increasing the number of design aspirants every year. Currently, there are approximately 7,000 qualified designers in the country and approximately 5,000 students in design education.

The International Teaching pedagogy from countries like France which is based on the principle of learning by doing, is providing Indian institution to amalgamate the most contemporary teaching approach in the current system. Students, however, show a keen interest in international mobility and other aspects of collaborative programmes. There is a regular trend of forming international partnerships to initiate a new design institution. The success of these partnerships is an excellent benchmark for more such collaborations. The Indian government acknowledges the role of foreign universities in achieving its mission of transforming India into an Asian higher education hub.

Design is now branching out its core roots to newer applications and utilities. Areas such as interaction design, service design, transformation design, and instructions design are establishing new paradigms. New tools and methodologies are being developed as there is a growing focus on the systematic and methodical incorporation of user experience in design, which entails the involvement of competencies in marketing research, consumer behavior, technology, anthropology and psychology in the design processes. It is important for Indian design institutions to embrace these new developments. Globally, design companies have developed a suite of services using design thinking and design methods. Different kinds of design services developed globally are design of services, design of public services, green design, etc. India needs these capabilities especially to contribute to the national missions. Design management and strategic design are other two areas where India needs to evolve its capabilities. Bringing such developments would also help to bring up the British universities in India and with their experience and expertise in the areas suggested above it would become easier to take advantage of the new opportunities along with their partner institutions.

We already know the value of design as it is a vital component for economic development and social well-being. India’s competitiveness as a global economy hinges on our ability to harness the power of design. Design education in India is a valuable asset, which must be nurtured so it can go from strength to greater strength. We need a sufficient number of designers to drive the industry and to devise solutions to face up to challenges such as sustainability, smart cities, clean India, and effectively delivering public services, says Ms. Avi Keswani, Co-founder and Director of the CREO Valley and LISAA School of Design.

The key driver for recruitment is actual and anticipated growth in business. The recruitment scenario in India is positive, 67% of the industry respondents confirm that they have recruited designers in the last three years and plan to recruit more. While 58% of the respondents feel that design graduates recruited in the last three years come with requisite skills to work. Also, the respondents agree that the employment opportunities for design students have significantly increased-- 87% reported that the employment opportunities have increased for the bachelor’s degree students and 78% reported the same for the master’s degree students. Perhaps this is because the number of available bachelor’s level design graduates is more.

In a traditional sense, the practice of design is very old in India. India has always had a rich culture and a well-developed craft tradition. The rituals, practices, and festivals are all design manifestations, with a profound purpose behind them. These traditions and crafts provide a wonderful backdrop and inspiration towards looking at and understanding modern design. The strength of Indian design stems from its deep cultural roots and its growing economic position. The power of design in an Indian context is magnified with the large population that needs design solutions. Beyond aesthetics, design has the power to bring change in the lives of people and be an integrator of values, aspirations, and culture. India has a vibrant design industry and an ever-increasing number of design users backed by a strong platform for design education. India has done well so far in terms of producing international quality designers. While qualified designers are few, the quality of designers and quality of training is high. Design in India has matured over the years and continues to grow from strength to strength.

This artiicle is authored by Avi Keswani, Co founder, LISAA School of Design.

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