There is anecdotal evidence that design is not appreciated in Cypriot society. Here we use the term ‘design’ in a broad sense, i.e. to include all aspects of design practice such as product design, graphic design, design services etc. At a time when design thinking is used to address a variety of social issues, it becomes imperative to gauge the status of design in Cypriot society to assess empirically its status, and then address how it can be fostered. The purpose of this report is to capture the status of design in Cypriot society, and not to provide a solution. Identification of the challenges is the first stage. Future work in this area, i.e. efforts to promote design and the benefits of design thinking, needs to be based on a realistic assessment of where design is currently, how it is perceived, what challenges it is confronted with.
Dr. Nicos Souleles is an academic at Cyprus University of Technology (CUT) with over twenty-two years of teaching experience in art and design education. He has worked at University of Western Sydney (Australia), Liverpool College of Further Education (Sydney, Australia), KvB Institute of Technology (Sydney, Australia), Cumbria Institute of the Arts (England), University of Sharjah (United Arab Emirates) and more recently at CUT. Some of his former students are employed by PIXAR (Peter Roe), have created special effects for the film MATRIX (Mike Malinowski for the company Animal Logic), have won the Royal Television Society Award in England (Peter Roe, Ian Wharton, Edward Shires and Jonathan Wood) and have started very successful multimedia design companies (Leo White, Hydrant). In more recent years Nicos pursues research in the area of design education and technology, and together with his doctoral students and some friends he runs a small research lab (www.elearningartdesign.org).