One of the best ways to continue to be inspired by your profession is to pursue opportunities in addition to your primary job. If you’re interested in becoming more involved in your profession, the resources below provide an excellent jumping point. There are industry associations and organizations to join, trade shows to attend, and competitions to enter your best work in. Become inspired!
International Interior Design Association (IIDA):
The vision and mission of the International Interior Design Association stands for the Future of Design. IIDA, with respect for past accomplishments of Interior Design leaders, strives to create a strong niche for the most talented and visionary Interior Design professionals, to elevate the profession to the level it warrants, and to lead the way for the next generation of Interior Design innovators. The Association provides a forum to demonstrate design professionals’ impact on the health, safety, wellbeing and virtual soul of the public, balancing passion for good design and strategy for best business practices. IIDA stands at the intersection of passion and strategy where designers create extraordinary interiors and experiences.
A Global Network: IIDA is committed to facilitating a global community for Members through the IIDA website. Through the site, you will be able to stay connected with your peers by viewing the Member-submitted events in the Event Calendar, reading articles written by or featuring Members in the Press Room, and linking to Twitter, Facebook and the IIDA blogs.
IIDA provides Members with the sources to attain expertise, knowledge and contacts. Chapters and City Centers are the visible strength of our Association, and their networking events allow professionals to connect on more personal levels that encourage trust, collaboration, and innovation. Use your contacts as leverage in seeking out opportunities and solidifying partnerships. The people you interact with form a microcosm of the Design World. – courtesy of IIDA
American Society of Interior Designers (ASID):
The core of the design community, the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) is a community of people – designers, industry representatives, educators and students – committed to interior design. Through education, knowledge sharing, advocacy, community building and outreach, we strive to advance the interior design profession and, in the process, to demonstrate and celebrate the power of design to positively change people’s lives. More than 24,000 members engage in a variety of professional programs and activities through a network of 48 chapters throughout the United States and Canada.
Founded in 1975, ASID is the oldest, largest and leading professional organization for interior designers. The rich, vibrant history of the organization goes back much further, to the founding of its predecessor organizations, the American Institute of Interior Designers (AID) and the National Society of Interior Designers (NSID). The History of ASID: 30 Years of Advancing the Interior Design Profession was published in 2005 to commemorate the achievements of the Society’s first three decades.
ASID inspires and enriches members by promoting the value of interior design, while providing indispensable knowledge and experiences that build relationships. The Society’s nearly 13,500 practicing interior designers work in all areas of commercial and residential design. Professional members of ASID must pass rigorous acceptance standards, including a combination of accredited design education and/or full-time work experience and passage of a two-day accreditation examination administered by the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ). ASID Industry Partners include more than 2,000 Industry Partner member companies with 6,000 individual representatives, uniting the professional designer with manufacturers of design-related products and services.
The Society’s membership also includes nearly 5,000 students of interior design. ASID has more than 280 student chapters at colleges, universities and design schools with 2-year and 4-year programs throughout the U.S. as well as several “virtual” chapters through online institutions. – courtesy of ASID
American Institute of Architects (AIA):
Based in Washington, D.C., the AIA has been the leading professional membership association for licensed architects, emerging professionals, and allied partners since 1857. With nearly 300 TRANSIT state and local chapters, the AIA serves as the voice of the architecture profession and the resource for our members in service to society.
We carry out our goal through advocacy, information, and community. Each year the AIA
- Sponsors hundreds of continuing education experiences to help architects maintain their licensure
- Sets the industry standard in contract documents with more than 100 forms and contracts used in the design and construction industry
- Provides countless Web-based resources for emerging architecture professionals
- Conducts market research and provides analysis of the economic factors that affect the business of architecture
- Hosts the annual AIA National Convention and Design Exposition
- Serves as an advocate of the architecture profession
- Promotes design excellence and outstanding professional achievement through an awards program
AIA member groups help you meet like-minded architecture professionals who share the same interests, expertise, and experience; get to know each other; and stay informed of the latest issues and trends. – courtesy of AIA
International Federation of Interior Architects/Designers (IFI):
The International Federation of Interior Architects/Designers is the global voice and authority for professional Interior Architects/Designers. IFI is the sole international federating body for Interior Architecture/Design organizations, and acts as a global forum for the exchange and development of knowledge and experience, in worldwide education, research and practice. Often considered as the “United Nations” of the Interior Architecture/Design field, IFI connects the international community in order to further the impact, influence and application of the design of interiors, promote global social responsibility, and raise the status of the profession worldwide.
Founded in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1963 as an international not-for-profit, the International Federation of Interior Architects/Designers (IFI) is the sole global authority for professional Interior Architects/Designers. Representing 270,000 designers, educators and industry stakeholders in the international design community in 110 countries , IFI furthers the dialogue exchange and development of knowledge and experience in education, research and practice, IFI impacts and influences the application of the design of interiors and the built environment. – courtesy of IFI
Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC):
The mission of The Interior Design Educators Council, Inc. is the advancement of interior design education, scholarship and service.
IDEC will be recognized as the leading association and authority on interior design education by:
- Advancing responsible design thinking through education, scholarship, and service.
- Advancing the interior design profession’s Body of Knowledge.
- Participating in leadership discussions and actions that affect the entire design community.
- Being the primary source of innovative interior design teaching resources.
- Being the leading venue for the publication, presentation, and dissemination of interior design scholarship.
- Preparing members for leadership roles in their academic institutions, communities, and the interior design profession at large.
- Providing support for the professional development of interior design educators at all professional levels.
Engaging interior design educators in service to the organization and to the greater community.
- We believe in the value of an accredited, formalized interior design education.
- We believe the preparation of an interior designer includes learning through formalized education, scholarship, and service.
- We believe the foundation of interior design education is grounded in ethics and encompasses environmental, cultural, social, global issues.
- We believe in an open dialogue and collaboration among colleagues.
- We believe a successful interior design education depends upon the participation of diverse groups of people.
– courtesy of IDEC
Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA):
Founded in 1965, the nonprofit Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) is one of the oldest and largest membership organizations for industrial design professionals. IDSA sponsors the annual International Design Excellence Awards® (IDEA), the world’s most prestigious industrial design honor, and its events, including an annual International Design Conference and five district conferences, bring together the brightest minds in the profession. INNOVATION, IDSA’s flagship publication, is a highly regarded magazine within the profession. IDSA has more than 3,200 members in 28 professional chapters in the US and internationally. To learn more about IDSA, visit www.idsa.org, and connect via Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.
What is ID?
Industrial Design (ID) is the professional service of creating products and systems that optimize function, value and appearance for the mutual benefit of both user and manufacturer.
Industrial designers develop products and systems through collection analysis and synthesis of data guided by the special requirements of their client and manufacturer. They prepare clear and concise recommendations through drawings, models, and descriptions. Industrial designers improve as well as create, and they often work within multi-disciplinary groups that include management, marketing, engineering and manufacturing specialists. Learn more about each step of the industrial design process at http://www.idsa.org/education/what-is-industrial-design. – courtesy of IDSA
Trade shows and fairs are excellent opportunities to experience new products in person, meet and network with your peers, and score CEU points. Below is a selection of North American trade shows.
2021 Dates: October 4 -6
Location: Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL
NeoCon is the largest commercial interiors show in North America, taking place at The Merchandise Mart in Chicago since 1969. NeoCon today remains the premier platform for connecting, learning and doing business in the industry. The three-day event attracts nearly 50,000 design professionals and showcases more than 700 leading companies. With more than one million square feet of exhibition space, the show launches thousands of new products and covers a spectrum of vertical markets including workplace, healthcare, hospitality, retail, education, public spaces and government. The exhibition is complemented by first-class educational programming featuring more than 100 accredited seminars, association forums, special events and keynote presentations that showcase leading industry and business experts.
At the show, you’ll see fabric, furniture, flooring, interior building products, interior finishes, international partnerships and technology products. – courtesy of NeoCon
NeoCon is typically held in June of each year at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago, IL. But since the Covid-19 Pandemic for 2021, at least, the show has been postponed to October at theMART..
Greenbuild International Conference & Expo 2021 / USGBC in San Diego
2021 Dates: Expo – September 21 – 23
Location: San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, CA
Both in-Person and Virtual, the Greenbuild International + Expo will be a three-day experience where exhibitors and sponsors can network with top sustainability end users seeking the latest cutting-edge solutions.
Thousands of attendees tuned in to the Greenbuild virtual event series in 2020. Given the popularity of the education, accessibility and expanded CE offering, Greenbuild will produce 7 events in 2021. Starting in August, 2021.
Living Future 2021 Digital Conference: April 20 – 23
On April 20-23, 2021, we will gather virtually to examine ways to stop the drivers of climate change and address the structural inequities in the built environment. Only when we recognize the inherent dignity of all can we come together as one, an inclusive, unified force in pursuit of justice for our people and our environment.
Share your voice. Join us in the pursuit of a living future; we will move forward together using the guiding principles of our annual theme of Inclusion + Unity. Together we will experience visionary and transformative voices in:
- Inspiring keynotes and plenaries
- Interactive sessions
- Unconference activities
- Virtual tours of certified Living Building Challenge projects
- Living Product Expo focused on responsible manufacturers
- Awards and prizes
- Get answers to FAQs
HD Expo: Hospitality Design Exposition & Conference
2021 Dates: August 24 – 25
Location: Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, NV
Now in its 30th year, HD Expo + Conference attracts the world’s most talented and sought-after network of interior designers, architects, hoteliers, owners, operators, developers, and purchasers. Attendees annually come together to see the launch of captivating products and resources, and to stay on top of industry news and trends through thought-provoking conference programming curated by Hospitality Design magazine.
Please watch for more information in the coming weeks about the new show dates and what to expect via email, and also at hdexpo.com or hospitalitydesign.com.
Thank you for your continued support—we look forward to welcoming you to HD Expo + Conference 2021!
International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF)
New Dates: November 14 – 15, 2021
Location: Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York City
WantedDesign Manhattan will continue to co-locate with ICFF in the November dates, and feature its signature programs including American Design Honors, Launch Pad and Look Book. The partnership will also deliver an expanded ICFF Talks, with keynote speakers and trend conversations.
ICFF 2021 visitors will also benefit from a strategic co-location with Boutique Design New York (BDNY) and HX: The Hotel Experience (HX), also on Sunday, November 14 and Monday, November 15, creating an unprecedented market experience. “As the lines between commercial and residential design continue to blur, and since half of ICFF’s attendees are specifying projects in the commercial space, qualified attendees will have access to hundreds of additional companies specializing in hospitality, as well as to inspirational educational panel discussions with industry visionaries,” noted Robinson.
More than 700 exhibitors from all points of the globe will display contemporary furniture, seating, carpet and flooring, lighting, outdoor furniture, materials, wall coverings, accessories, textiles, and kitchen and bath for residential and commercial interiors. This remarkable throng of exhibitors creates an unparalleled opportunity to view a broad yet highly focused selection of the world’s finest, most innovative, and original avant-garde home and contract products side-by-side, under one roof. – j courtesy of ICFF
Interior design, architecture, and product design competitions are hosted year-round by:
- Industry associations and organizations
- Industry publications
- Trade shows
To keep in the loop about available competitions, check out the trade organization and association websites for information on all of their competitions. Also, subscribe to email lists of companies whose competitions you might be interested in.