Can Design Really Drive Innovation?

March 6, 2017, 11:38 AM UTC

This week some of the world’s most influential designers are gathering in Singapore to talk about the future of innovation, and Time Inc is helping to lead the conversation.

The editors of Fortune, Time, and Wallpaper* have partnered with the DesignSingapore Council to program the second edition of the Innovation by Design Conference on Tuesday March 7 and Wednesday March 8. The event is a centerpiece of Singapore Design Week and is supported by the Singapore Economic Development Board.

With a theme of “Design – Innovate – Transform,” this year’s event will convene thought leaders in industrial and product design, architecture, digital experience, and other disciplines to discuss how the revolution in design thinking is unlocking new opportunities for growth.

When attendees aren’t networking, they’ll be treated to a dynamic lineup of speakers and panel discussions exploring a handful of major themes: Design & Technology, Design as Strategy, Design & Transforming Your Organization, and Design & Engaging Your Customers.

Here’s a sampling of the agenda:

Radical breakthroughs in technology—in everything from AI to materials science—are having a profound effect on design. Barry Wacksman, global chief strategy officer for international ad agency R/GA, will share how technology is allowing the creation of new ecosystems for customers.

Cutting edge design has become a high priority for companies such as IBM and GE. Derrick Kiker, partner at McKinsey & Company, will explain why it provides a competitive edge.

A pair of design executives at Fortune 500 companies will share their experiences leading culture transformations.

PepsiCo’s first chief design officer, Mauro Porcini, has helped take a brand known for food and beverages into new realms such as events, retail “activation,” and digital media. He’ll share how he has evangelized the power of design throughout his multinational corporation.

Johnson & Johnson chief design officer Ernesto Quinteros is responsible for integrating design thinking into every aspect of one of the world’s largest healthcare companies. He’ll explain how he’s using a “care-centered” approach to design to drive innovation.

Knowing what drives your customer is essential to good design. Chelsia Lau, chief designer at the Shanghai Advanced Studio for Ford Motor Co., will talk about her approach to giving consumers what they want.

Where will the next generation take design? Wallpaper* editor Tony Chambers will explore that question with three rising stars in the design world: London-based luxury fashion designer Beatrix Ong; Hong Kong-born architect André Fu; and Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde,

That’s just a sampling of the lineup. Follow the conversations through coverage of the Innovation by Design conference here on over the next couple of days.