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Tenth anniversary of World Design Capital Helsinki

2022 marks the tenth anniversary since Helsinki was the World Design Capital together with the cities of Espoo, Vantaa, Kauniainen and Lahti. Over the course of this ten-year journey, design has earned a permanent place as one of Helsinki’s core functions.

Helsinki’s World Design Capital year 2012 was the starting point for the extensive use of design throughout the city organisation. During the year, design became a topic of social interest and conversation, and the user perspective as part of design was enhanced. New types of cooperation were established between different sectors, and new co-working methods and places emerged in Helsinki.

Over the past 10 years, Helsinki has become an internationally recognised City of Design, whose experience and expertise are held in high regard. Design has been used to develop services for city residents and urban environment together with various design industry operators and institutes.

Helsinki will celebrate design in 2022

During the anniversary year, the many successes and lessons learnt along Helsinki’s ten-year design journey will be highlighted, and we will also set our sights on the future: the importance of design in the construction of good life and an equal city.

In the future, design will systematically become part of the user-oriented renewal of city services and improving the productivity of the city organisation. Good design and architecture support the well-being of Helsinki residents, enhance the resident experience and promote the Helsinki brand. Design will also support the city’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

During 2022, Helsinki’s design expertise will be celebrated with various public urban space development projects, from placemaking experiments to a new theme playground. Design also plays a key role in the digital development of the city.

Children’s architectural and design learning will be supported by supplementary training for teachers. The design of the New Museum of Architecture and Design is coming along, and the winner of the Makasiiniranta quality and concept competition will be announced.

The anniversary culminates in the autumn with the Helsinki Design Week, the largest design festival in the Nordic countries, taking over the city on 8–18 September 2022.

Information on the tenth anniversary of WDC Helsinki will be updated on this website throughout the year.

Photo: Jussi Hellsten