Kolding becomes UNESCO Design City

Kolding is now the first Danish city to call itself UNESCO Design City

”We are very honoured; although we did initiate the strategy of becoming a design city ourselves. It has been a long journey and now we are able to see the results. We are very proud,” says Mayor of Kolding Jørn Pedersen.

Kolding Municipality was chosen based on a long-term design strategy which was decided by the city council on 10 December 2012. Design School Kolding has been along for the whole ride and is still a partner when it comes to launching new design initiatives. Recently, Kolding hosted the Danish Design Award, which is usually held in Copenhagen. Rector at Design School Kolding, Elsebeth Gerner Nielsen, says to Danish newspaper Jyske Vestkysten that ”it is a great recognition of Kolding and very valuable to the Design School and to our businesses. Now we are in the same league as some of the world’s finest design cities, including Mexico City. The recognition is a great platform for marketing Kolding and our educational programmes and for attracting events.”

In Kolding you use design processes in kindergartens, at the employment services and the citizens service centre. And right now, the city is using design processes and user involvement to build a new large marina area.

Kolding’s design strategy has also had a positive effect on the local companies. Some have joined a design network that employs design processes to make companies grow. New companies decide to move to Kolding due to the city’s design strategy “We design life”.

The Creative Cities Network comprises 116 cities from 54 countries within seven creative areas: Craftsmanship & People’s Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Music and Media Art.