1973 - 1983
The Design Center Philippines was created
in 1973 through Presidential Decree 279
with the mandate to develop, enhance and promote the design of Philippine-
manufactured handicrafts. The Center’s projects, services, and activities were
channeled toward two specific ends: the
promotion of design awareness and the
creation of new product designs. National
Artist for Visual Arts Arturo R. Luz was the
inaugural Executive Director who led the
agency in conducting and implementing
promotion, research and development
programs that paved the way for innovative and pioneering design for Philippine products and handicrafts.
1983 - 1993
Design for Exports
With export promotions as the focus of the Department of Trade and Industry in the early 1980s, Design Center realigned its programs towards the improvement
of the quality and competitiveness of
Philippine non-traditional export products through design.
The Philippines was regarded as the “Milan of Asia,” owing it to the country’s prolific furniture designs, and with several furniture designers winning international awards (Star Awards of Paris and Roscoe Awards of the US) for their product designs, which included Design Center designers.
1993 - 2010
Design for MSMEs
With the government’s focus on energizing the growth of MSMEs, which comprise 99 percent of the country’s manufacturing industry, Design Center intensified its efforts to assist countryside manufacturers with design intervention appropriate to their capabilities. The Design Center worked heavily with MSMEs participating in provincial, regional, and national trade fairs.
2010 - Present
The Design Center continues to cultivate the country’s creative capital, and strengthen the culture surrounding design as a response to design’s role in accelerating businesses by creating new value, new markets, and new user experiences.