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How do cities design? Join us and learn about Helsinki’s journey as a city of design and the future outlooks of design

The seminar, to be held at the Helsinki City Hall Event Square on 6 September, will address the role of design in urban development and also share lessons learnt in the past and future prospects.

Helsinki was the World Design Capital in 2012. The year marked the launch of a broader use of design in Helsinki’s city organisation.

Over the course of this ten-year journey, design has earned a permanent place as one of the city’s core functions. The city already has a network of close to 200 design experts, and last year more than 130 design projects were implemented in Helsinki.

The role of design in city development will be at the heart of the seminar

Design and the City: Learnings from a 10-Year Journey, to be held at Helsinki City Hall Event Square on 6 September. The seminar will be open to all interested in design and delve into lessons learnt in the past and future outlooks, also from the perspectives of other cities of design and professionals in the field.

The keynote speakers of this English-language seminar will be designer and architect Indy Johar and author and illustrator Linda Liukas.

Indy Johar is the co-founder and director of Project00 and Dark Matter Laboratories. Linda Liukas is known for her Hello Ruby storybooks that introduce the world of programming to children. The City of Helsinki is currently planning a computer-themed playground in Ruoholahti together with Liukas and Näkymä Oy Landscape Architects.

Please register for the seminar by 2 September through this link. The Event Square has room for the first 100 to register. You can also join the seminar remotely at Helsinki Channel.

The seminar is part of the Helsinki Design Week programme.

Design and the City: Learnings from a 10-Year Journey

Tue 6 September at 13:00–16:00 Event Square, Helsinki City Hall lobby (Pohjoisesplanadi 11-13) and online at


13.00 Video Greetings, David Kusama, President, World Design Organization (WDO)

13.05 Introduction, Chief Design Officer Hanna Harris, City of Helsinki

13.10 Keynote Indy Johar, Dark Matter Labs

14.00 The role of design in cities

Päivi Hietanen from the City of Helsinki, Anni Orttenvuori-Ganter from the City of Espoo and Johanna Palomäki from the City of Lahti discuss the role of design and challenges in cities. Xavi Calvo Lopez brings us greetings from the World Design Capital 2022 Valencia.

15.00 The view to the future

Anna Valtonen from Aalto University, Jukka Savolainen from the Design Museum and Mikko Koivisto from Digitalist Group discuss future perspectives of design.

15.30 Keynote Linda Liukas, author, illustrator and educator

16.00 Closing words, Chief Design Officer Hanna Harris

Further information

Seminar programme and speaker introductions
Helsinki as a City of Design
Helsinki Designs Good Life video
Helsinki Design Week

Photo: Lille Santanen