The Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and Smithsonian magazine today announced the launch of the People’s Design Award contest, Sept. 10 through Oct. 11. This year, the public is invited to vote for their favorite design from a pool of 20 works that emphasizes how innovative design makes a difference in our everyday lives. The winning design will be announced live Oct. 17 at the National Design Awards Gala in New York.

Design enthusiasts are invited to vote once per day for their favorite design by visiting Nominees range from transportation solutions (Helios Bars, HelmetHub and Sunset Skateboards), designs for healthy living (Misfit Shine), educational products (littleBits), interactive design (Dot Dot Dot, Double, Journey, Leap Motion controller, Mailbox and Medium) and landscape design (Nature Gardens at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County and Spring Street Park, Los Angeles), to medical devices (EvoCam by Evotech and Hamilton-T1 Ventilator), emergency preparedness tools (Etón BoostTurbine 4000 and SpareOne plus phone) and examples of socially responsible design (Tiny House grown with Ecovative’s Mushroom Insulation, PackH20 Water Backpack, and Protein Pods and a New Coat of Paint).

“Cooper-Hewitt’s People’s Design Award contest encourages the American public to think about the impact of design and broadens the conversation about the significance of good design,” said Caroline Baumann, director of the museum. “The great range in this year’s contest illustrates how design improves lives from carrying water to personal safety. I am excited to see what emerges as the public’s favorite amongst these many inspiring design projects.”

The People’s Design Award is part of Cooper-Hewitt’s largest public education initiative, National Design Week, Oct. 12-Oct. 20. The museum offers a series of public programs for students, teachers, design professionals and the general public to celebrate the important role that design plays in all aspects of daily life. In recognition of the importance of design education, organizations and schools nationwide also will sponsor events during National Design Week.

First launched in 2006, previous winners of the People’s Design Award include Marianne Cusato, designer of the Katrina Cottage, Toms Shoes, the Zōn Hearing Aid, the Trek Lime Bicycle, the Braille Alphabet Bracelet and Design Matters, a show about design and culture.

National Design Week is made possible in part by the generous sponsorship of Target.
National Design Awards are made possible in part by Procter and Gamble and SodaStream. Additional support is provided in part by Design Within Reach. National Design Award trophies are created by The Corning Museum of Glass. The National Design Awards Gallery is powered by Behance. Media sponsorship is provided by Smithsonian magazine.

National Design Awards and National Design Week professional supporters include AIGA | the professional association for design, American Institute of Architects New York Chapter, American Society of Interior Designers, American Society of Landscape Architects, Industrial Designers Society of America, Interaction Design Association and International Interior Design Association.

About Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum
Founded in 1897, Cooper-Hewitt is the only museum in the nation devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design. The museum presents compelling perspectives on the impact of design on daily life through active educational programs, exhibitions and publications.

Cooper-Hewitt’s main facility, housed in the Carnegie Mansion, is undergoing renovation as part of a $64 million capital campaign that includes enlarged and enhanced facilities for exhibitions, collections display, education programming and the National Design Library, and an increased endowment. During the renovation, Cooper-Hewitt’s usual schedule of exhibitions, education programs and events take place at various off-site locations, including the Cooper-Hewitt Design Center in Harlem.