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D&AD Awards 2022 FAQs

Got a question?  Here are some of the common questions our entrants ask us, grouped by topics.

More questions? We'll do all we can to answer them. Head over to our Awards page, or if you're stuck, you can contact us on +44 (0) 20 7840 1111 or awards@dandad.org.

Key Dates

Super Early Bird Discount Deadline: 12 January 2022
Super Early Bird Submission Deadline: 19 January 2022
Early Bird Discount Deadline: 16 February 2022
Early Bird Submission Deadline: 23 February 2022
Final Deadline: 16 March 2022
Final Submission Deadline: 23 March 2022
Shortlists Announced: 12-17 May
Awards Ceremony: 25-26 May

What's the difference between the discount deadline and the submission deadline?
You will have until the discount deadline to create and pay for your entries. You will have until the corresponding submission deadline to add, remove or replace any entry materials and to submit.

When will entries close?
The deadline to pay for entries is 16 March 2022. You have until the 23rd March to finalise the details of your submission (if you paid the final deadline price).

When is the deadline to post my entry materials?
For Entries paid for on or before the Super Earlybird deadline of 12 January 2022, any supporting physical materials must be received by D&AD on or before 26 January 2022.

For Entries paid for after 12 January but before the Earlybird deadline of 16 February 2022, any supporting physical materials must be received by D&AD on or before 2 March 2022.

For Entries paid for after 16 February but before the Entry deadline of 16 March 2022, any supporting physical materials must be received by D&AD on or before 30 March 2022.

What's New?

Upstream Innovation
In recent years, the creative industry has been called upon to rise up and find solutions to some of the most pressing issues of our time. Our Upstream Innovation subcategories recognise those who are rethinking products and services at the design stage so that they fit within a circular system. Whether it be developing new concepts and materials, applying reuse models or finding other ways to circulate components; entries in these subcategories are intentionally designing out waste and plastic pollution. See Packaging Design, Impact and Future Impact categories for more information.

Responsible Ideas
Continuing to champion work that’s mindful of people and planet, we’re introducing three new subcategories for 2022: Responsible Activations, Responsible Products and Responsible Spaces. From inspiring ideas that are leading the way in encouraging principled behaviour, to work that’s prioritising sustainability through design and reducing harm to the surrounding ecosystem. Entries in these subcategories will demonstrate how the constraints of responsibility can be the catalyst for a great creative idea. See Experiential, Product Design and Spatial Design categories for more information.

Use of XR, AR, VR and MR
As technologies evolve, there’s been an explosion in the use of augmented, virtual and mixed realities to convey a brand message. This year we’ve introduced dedicated subcategories for AR, VR and MR work in Experiential, Gaming and Entertainment. More broadly, we have Use of XR for existing and emerging technologies that create an immersive experience, reimagining how brands interact with consumers. This includes AR, VR and MR work. Find Use of XR in Digital, E-Commerce, Digital Design, Animation, Typography and Visual Effects.

Creative Transformation
We’re pleased to announce the evolution of our Design Transformation category, into something broader and more inclusive of creative change. Our Creative Transformation category is for work that is revolutionising organisations, products, services and spaces to provide value and enhance the customer experience. Whether it be transforming a brand, product, service, space, culture or operation; whether you’re improving the way you engage with customers, or prioritising sustainability to inform and shape the brand going forward. 

Health & Wellbeing
The subject of health and wellbeing has never been more prominent. With the adoption of new discourse and behaviours in areas such as mental health, radical self-care and Covid-19, we want to give space to all those who are effectively communicating and innovating in the field of health, wellness, fitness and nutrition. From awareness campaigns to portable healthcare products; find eight Health & Wellbeing subcategories across Digital, Direct, Film, Integrated, Branding, Digital Design, Product Design and Gaming.

Music Videos
Looking to enter a music video to be judged on a specific craft? We’ve moved our cinematography, direction, editing, production design and visual effects subcategories out of Music Videos, to sit within their individual craft categories. We’ve done this so we can make sure the right craftspeople are judging the work. The cost to enter will stay the same; please refer to the Music Videos category for information on Entry Fees.

Side Hustle Masterclass
Shortlisted entrants in the Side Hustle category are required to present their work remotely to a panel of Judges. For the first time, we are inviting all those who are Shortlisted to attend a D&AD Masterclass, entitled ‘Presenting Creative Work’. Worth £560, the class will be available to all finalists live and online, to help them prepare for Pitch Day. See the Side Hustle category in the Entry Kit fore more information.

D&AD Impact Fund
This year sees the return of the D&AD Impact Fund. Worth £25,000, the Fund will support sustainable designs and initiatives awarded in the Future Impact category. Shortlisted entrants will be eligible to apply for a grant, to be used toward the development and launch of their work. The Impact Council will meet to decide how the Fund will be distributed. The Impact Fund is just one of the benefits of being awarded in the Future Impact category. All those shortlisted will have access to the D&AD Impact Programme - 12 months of mentoring, training and visibility, provided by D&AD and its Impact Council, to support project owners with the development of their idea. Winners will also receive a D&AD Pencil.

Ad Net Zero
D&AD have signed up to Ad Net Zero to achieve industry wide carbon neutrality by 2030. Read more about Ad Net Zero here. What does this mean for entrants? In the coming years we’ll be asking more questions and introducing criteria around sustainability, to support the aims of this initiative. This commitment is an extension of the ongoing work D&AD has championed since the launch of the White Pencil in 2011 (now D&AD Impact), designed to raise awareness of progress toward the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. This year we’ve introduced two additional judging criteria across selected subcategories. Refer to the Judging Criteria in the Entry Kit for more information.

Ceremony 2022
The D&AD Awards Ceremony will be held over two nights on 25 and 26 May 2022. As many international travel restrictions will still be in place, we are continuing to live broadcast the show. However, this year we’ll be hosting watch parties in a number of locations. Make sure you’re subscribed to awards news for updates.

New Entry Site
As good as our previous entry site was, we felt it was time for an upgrade. This year sees the launch of a new site that has been developed thanks to your suggestions, giving you more time to complete those entry details. Of course it won’t be perfect in year one, so if you do have any feedback or features you want to see, please let the team know on awards@dandad.org

Eligibility

What are the eligibility rules?
To be eligible, work must have been:

  • Commercially released between 1 January 2021 and 18 April 2022*
  • Produced in response to a genuine brief from a client or approved by a client
  • Made available to the public through legal mediums
  • Approved and paid for by the client

*Alternative eligibility windows apply to the following categories: Digital Design/Incremental Design, Digital Design/Beta, Product Design/Prototypes, Integrated/Established Campaigns, PR/Established Campaigns, Creative Transformation, Side Hustle, Impact, Future Impact and Collaborative. Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for more information.

What are the eligibility dates?
Work must be commercially released between January 1 2021 - 18 April 2022 *. Alternative eligibility windows apply to the following subcategories:

Creative Transformation: The transformation must have taken place between 1 January 2019 - 18 April 2022. It does not need to be complete, but it must be underway.

Digital Design / Incremental: The changes must have taken place between 1 January 2019 and 18 April 2022.

Digital Design / Beta: The beta version of a platform, app or technology must have been released for the final stages of audience testing within the Awards Qualifying Entry Period.

Product Design / Prototypes: The prototype must have been released for audience testing within the Awards Qualifying Entry Period.

Integrated / Established Campaigns and PR / Established Campaigns: Campaigns must have been launched prior to 1 January 2021 and be commercially active within the Awards Qualifying Entry Period.

Side Hustle and Future Impact: May not be commercially released, but must have been developed or significantly changed within the Awards Qualifying Entry Period.

Impact: Entries in the Impact category are subject to a qualifying entry period of 1 January 2019 - 18 April 2022. Entries into the Impact/Sustained Solution subcategory may be commercially released prior to 1 January 2019, but must have been commercially active within this period.

Collaborative: Entrants must have enjoyed an uninterrupted commercial relationship with a client during the period of at least three calendar years preceding 18 April 2022, and produced a minimum of two campaigns or projects for the client in each of these calendar years.

*The eligibility date extends beyond our final deadline to allow entry of any work that is scheduled to launch or air in the couple of weeks post the final deadline - Note all submission materials can not be changed after the final submission date.

My work was created before the eligibility dates, can I still enter?
If the work was released for the first time before 1 January 2021 and is not covered by any of the alternative eligibility windows outlined above, it is eligible only under one of these two conditions:

  1. The majority of the work (only applies to campaign entries) was launched between January 1 2021 - 18 April 2022.
  2. The work was changed/updated then re-launched between January 1 2021 - 18 April 2022, having undergone a significant creative development.

Can two companies enter the same work?
Two different entrants cannot enter the same work within the same sub-category. If your project is a collaboration with other companies/individuals, check they haven’t entered it first. In case of duplicate entries, we will only accept the entry that was paid first.

Can I enter work if I am the client?
Yes, clients can enter work produced for them either internally or by an external agency (as long as it has not been entered by the external agency in the same category) – see previous question.

Can I enter work done for free for a charity?
Yes, however, to be eligible there must be a contractual relationship between the charity and entrant agency. If the media/ airtime was provided pro-bono we reserve the right to ask for confirmation from the media owner.

Can I enter self-initiated or self-promotional projects?
Self-promotional work is eligible only if it was released commercially and made available to potential customers. Self-promotional work must not include any third-party names, trade marks, logos and/or any other third-party intellectual property, and must not falsely claim, suggest or imply any association with a third party. Self-initiated work is not permitted.

Do you accept concept work?
No.

Do you accept work created for the purpose of entering competitions?
Work produced in response to a competition is only eligible if it was commercially released, and if it was signed off by the client it represents.

Prices and Payments

How much does it cost to enter?
The price depends on the category that is being entered. Details of pricing are listed in the Entry Kit on page 14. Please note that these prices do not include VAT; VAT is only applicable for UK entrants, and will be added on check-out.

What do you mean by A, B & C?
To find out how much it will cost to enter, please refer to the price code on the category pages displayed next to each sub-category. As a general rule:

(A) = 1 execution - a stand alone piece of work, or part of a series, range, campaign etc.
(B) = 1 or more executions - Applies to some sub categories where we accept both single or multiple executions.
(C) = Multiple executions - a series, range, scheme, campaign or integrated.

What payment methods are accepted?
Bank transfers (BACS) and credit card payments. Cheques are not accepted. For bank transfers, the total amount must be transferred within seven days of completing your entry online.

Can I make changes to entries after I have paid?
Once you have paid for an entry, you can no longer change the Category, Subcategory and, where applicable, the type of execution and type of work.

You have until the relevant submission deadline to add, remove and replace any materials forming part of your entry (please refer to the submission deadline dates above). After submitting your entry you are unable to make further changes.

If you fail to submit your entry before the submission deadline, the price difference between the deadline tiers will be charged.

Can I get a discount on entries?
All entries submitted before the Super Early Bird deadline of midnight on 12 January will receive 40% off.
Entries submitted during the Early Bird window of 13 January - 15 February will receive 20% off.
All entries submitted post 16 February will be subject to standard pricing.

Also freelancers and businesses with less than 10 employees get a 25% discount on entries. Contact us at awards@dandad.org to obtain a discount code.

I forgot to add my discount code during checkout, can this be added on?
If your entry hasn’t been paid for, you can return to the checkout page to enter your discount code. Under 'Discount code', copy and paste the code and don't forget to click the 'Apply' button.

Discount codes must be used at the point of payment on the entry site and can not be redeemed or refunded retrospectively.

My discount code isn't working, what should I do?
If you find that your discount code isn't working, please check the below:

  • You can only use the discount code once. Once you've applied the code, it is no longer valid.
  • As our discount codes vary, so do the terms and conditions of each. Make sure you check when you receive any codes as some may only be valid for certain categories and the majority of codes will have an expiry date.

If your discount code is still not working after checking all of the above, please get in touch with our Team so we can help you further.

Currency price differences
There is a difference between prices in GBP, USD and EUR. Our prices do not reflect the current international exchange rates. Our entry fees have been established in comparison to the average entry fees of other major awards in different markets and currencies. As such if you are paying in British Pounds you will be paying a different amount than if you are paying in USD or Euros.

You can choose to pay in any currency, including GBP, if that is more convenient for you. Please note we will then charge you in GBP so if you are paying from an account in Euros/USDs you have to take the conversion rates into account.

Can I get a refund?
You will only be eligible for a refund if you withdraw your entry within 48 hours of making payment by credit card, or by raising an invoice to pay via BACS.

Where does the money I spend on my entries go?
What people often don’t realise is that D&AD is a charity. In fact, everything we do is about inspiring the next generation of creative talent, improving their access to the industry, and nurturing and developing their skills. Thanks to the Awards, we are uniquely positioned to bring insights on creative excellence to aspiring creatives, providing free or heavily subsidised educational tools, and creating new, more accessible routes into the industry. We do this through our suite of New Blood programmes - which have been helping aspiring creatives realise their potential for 40 years. It’s a critical bridge between education and the world of work. In 2021, we provided 141,716 vocational learning opportunities to emerging creatives. So, enter not just for a chance at the glory, but to contribute to our mission to make the creative world stronger, fairer and more open for everyone. To find out more about our new blood programmes please visit dandad.org or contact us on newblood@dandad.org.

Creating an Entry

Which categories should I enter my creative work into?
The full list of categories is included in the Entry Kit. You may enter the same work into as many categories as you like. The only exception to this is Future Impact. Work entered into this category will only be eligible for Product Design/Prototypes, Digital Design/Beta and Side Hustle, subject to meeting their criteria.

Need help with your entry? Please contact one of our regional account managers. Details are provided in the Contact section below and on Page 97 of the Entry Kit.

Do I need to add all the credits for the work?
Not yet. If you have a shortlisted or winning entry, wait for the email notification to submit your credits after the work has been judged. Our Judging process kicks off from 6 April to 19 May.

What supporting information do I need to provide for my entries?
Please check the 'Key Information' at the top of each category page in the Entry Kit. Further details can be found under 'Supporting Information' on pages 93 - 96. You will be asked to provide supporting information when completing your online submission. Judges love to know the facts, so keep your written information short and to the point.

Do I need to provide translations?
Yes. If your work was not originally released in English, you need to submit the work in its original language, alongside a translation. For films, this means subtitles. For non-film work, simply type up your translation online. We do not accept translations as a separate document or film. Please note that we do not accept translations in Writing for Advertising and Writing for Design categories — entries here are only accepted if originally released in English. This is to ensure that the writing is judged fairly and not based on translations.

What are the submission formats specs?
Submission format specifications can be found on pages 89 - 92 of the Entry Kit.

Why do I need to submit reference images?
Any physical submissions entered will be required to supply 1-5 Reference Images, which will be used for our judges to familiarise themselves with the work before they judge onsite. The images will also be used if your work is successful, for our winners page, D&AD Ceremony and any social/ press releases.

Can I withdraw an entry?
If you would like to withdraw your entry for any reason, you must give written notice to D&AD by emailing our awards team at awards@dandad.org, providing sufficient detail to enable D&AD to identify the relevant entry.

Physical Materials

When is the deadline to post my entry materials?
Physical materials have to get to D&AD by the following dates:

Super Early Bird Physical Materials Deadline: 26 January 2022
Early Bird Physical Materials Deadline: 2 March 2022
Physical Materials Deadline: 30 March 2022

How do I label my entries for posting?
Labels are available once you've completed your online submission.

What address do I send entries to?
Our address is: D&AD Awards, 64 Cheshire Street, London, E2 6EH, United Kingdom.

You’ll also find this address on the labels once you've completed your online submission. If you use a courier service, please note, our office hours are Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 5:30pm GMT.

How do I send work from outside the UK?
Mark your package as 'Competition material: no commercial value'. If you need to indicate the value of the goods in the package, use a token value, for example $1 per entry. Please make sure you have settled all shipping costs and customs fees before sending your entries. If not, your package will be held up in customs or refused at our office because of unpaid shipping costs.

How will I know if my package has arrived?
If we have not received your package, our Awards team will be in touch.

Judging Process

How will my work be judged?
When assessing the work, Judges will consider a set of criteria specific to the category. For details, please see page 7 of the Entry Kit.

Can I be a judge?
We are always looking for fair representation across the creative industry, a diversity of voices and above all exceptional talent. 

We always welcome any Judge recommendations. If you're able to fill out the following form, that would be fantastic!

https://d-and-ad.typeform.com/to/qaql08ey

Results

When will I know if my work is successful?
Shortlists will be announced from 12-17 May 2022. D&AD Pencil winners will be announced at the D&AD Awards Ceremony on 25–26 May 2022.

During judging we will send an official confirmation of the results to the person registered as the main contact for the entries.

What do the award levels mean?

Shortlist: Work that demonstrates merit, worthy of recognition and in the top echelon of entries. It’s awarded in all categories in the first instance.

Wood Pencil: The best of the year in advertising, design, craft, culture and impact.

Graphite Pencil: For stand-out work that rises above the rest, worthy of consideration for a Yellow Pencil.

Yellow Pencil: The iconic D&AD Yellow Pencil, awarded only to outstanding work that achieves true creative excellence.

Black Pencil: The ultimate creative accolade, reserved for ground-breaking work. Only a handful of these are awarded each year, if any.

Future Impact Pencil: Awarded to work in the Future Impact category. Early-stage projects that demonstrate the potential to drive behavioural, environmental, societal or policy change through creativity. Both Pencil Winners and Shortlisted entrants will also receive a place on the D&AD Impact Programme and the right to apply for a development grant from the D&AD Impact Fund. See https://www.dandad.org/en/d-ad-impact/ for more information.

White Pencil: Replaces the Yellow Pencil in the Impact category. Exceptional projects that use the power of creativity to drive behavioural, environmental, societal or policy change.

Side Hustle Pencil: Awarded to work in the Side Hustle category. Awarded to inspiring, scalable projects that demonstrate creativity and innovation.

Collaborative Award: Awarded to work in the Collaborative category. Recognises the long-lasting relationships between clients and their design, advertising and production companies – leading to the creation of amazing work over time.

President's Award: Every year, D&AD honours an industry hero, a legend whose contribution to the industry has been nothing but inspirational. The recipient is chosen by the D&AD President and will be announced at the D&AD Awards Ceremony.

Companies of the Year: Pencil winners and shortlisted companies are allocated points for each win*. The points are then accumulated to determine the 1st, 2nd and 3rd places in the following categories:

  • Advertising Agency of the Year
  • Design Agency of the Year
  • Production Company of the Year
  • Client of the Year
  • Network of the Year
  • Independent Agency of the Year
  • In-house Agency of the Year

*Points are not allocated to Side Hustle winners.

What happens if my work is successful?
All Shortlisted work will:

  • Be celebrated by over 160,000 visitors and 1m+ views on the D&AD Winners pages, Archive and Rankings each year.
  • Feature in the D&AD Annual, now online and freely accessible to tens of thousands of creative companies and practitioners globally. In 2021 the Annual reached a global audience of over 75,000 people, three quarters of which are outside the UK.
  • Get exhibited around the world at one of D&AD’s international exhibitions. Past venues include The Advertising Museum Tokyo, Louvre Museum Paris, Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts, Hong Kong Design Institute, Arts Centre Melbourne.
  • Have the chance to appear in the Behind the Work insight video series for the D&AD Annual. Judges will provide commentary on, and curate lists, of their favourite award winners.
  • Inform D&AD Annual theme reports, which will be presented alongside winning work to agencies and clients all over the world.
  • Be promoted through D&AD social media channels and the D&AD newsletter, reaching millions of creative professionals globally.
  • Earn prestige amongst your peers, global media coverage for you and your company and points towards D&AD rankings.
  • Give Future Impact entrants access to a £25,000 Impact Fund and a place on the D&AD Impact Programme.
  • Give Side Hustle entrants training and support towards their Side Hustle pitch in advance of the final round of judging, worth £560.

In addition, all Pencil winning work will:

  • Receive a coveted D&AD Pencil
  • Feature in the D&AD Awards Ceremony, viewed by over 8,000 of the finest minds in the industry in 2021
  • Have a tree planted in tribute to the work as part of The & Forest.

What are the D&AD rankings?
Each year D&AD publishes their official table of the most successful companies, networks, countries and clients. The tables are based on the results of the D&AD Awards, and are known as the D&AD rankings. For 2022, they are:

  • Design Agency of the Year
  • Advertising Agency of the Year
  • Production Company of the Year
  • Independent Agency of the Year
  • In-house agency of the Year
  • Network of the Year
  • Client of the Year

How are rankings calculated?
Rankings are based on the results of the D&AD Awards. A particular methodology therefore applies to each ranking. Click here for details.

The & Forest

What is The & Forest?
In 2021 we partnered with D&AD Future Impact winner theOtherDada to plant a tree in tribute to every Pencil awarded. These trees are part of an innovative afforestation programme that's restoring vital biodiversity in much needed areas of Lebanon. The & Forest will be located in the Chiyah area, planted and maintained by youth, people from the community and with the support of local NGO Himaya. You can read more about theOtherDada's winning entry here and read our latest report on the planting of The & Forest via the Awards Homepage.

Why are you doing this?
We wanted to take action to reduce our carbon footprint and to donate to a project that would provide meaningful impact. So we thought it would be appropriate for us to continue our partnership with D&AD Future Impact winner theOtherDada — to co-create a lush native forest that will provide green spaces for the local community to thrive.

Side Hustle

What is D&AD Side Hustle?
It's a creative competition to start-up or scale-up your passion projects. Make the grade and you’ll be pitching to a panel of creative entrepreneurs and investors. As well as global exposure, we offer training and mentoring to the winners.

Who can enter?
Entry is open to anyone with a Side Hustle, so long as it demonstrates flair and creativity. It must have been developed or significantly changed within the Awards Qualifying Entry Period (1 January 2021 - 18 April 2022). Is your Side Hustle on the way to becoming your main hustle? Then our scale up categories are for you.

We have dedicated subcategories for:

Emerging Talent: Side Hustlers who are still in education, have recently graduated or are non-professionals.
Junior Professionals: Side Hustlers with less than 5 years experience producing commercial creative work.
Established Professionals: Side Hustlers with more than 5 years experience producing commercial creative work.

What are the Judges looking for?
The Judges will be looking out for work that combines creativity and innovation. For start-ups, the idea should demonstrate appropriate research and testing and show potential for growth. Scale-ups should demonstrate some early success and show how they're on track to meet their intended scale.

What can I win?
Shortlisted entrants will receive their name and work in the D&AD Annual, online and freely accessible to the global creative community. In 2021 this reached a global audience of over 75,000 people. New for this year, we are also inviting Shortlisted Entrants to a D&AD pitching masterclass, worth £560, to help them prepare for Side Hustle Pitch Day. The Masterclass will be held remotely on Thursday 5 May 2022.

Winning entrants will receive the above plus:

  • A D&AD Side Hustle Pencil, a symbol of creative excellence
  • Two hours of mentoring with a D&AD judge
  • A D&AD Masterclass on the topic of skills, mindset or leadership
  • A tree planted in The & Forest as a tribute to the work

How much does it cost to enter?
Prices start from just £18.

Are discounts available?
Super Early Bird and Early Bird discounts are available. Please refer to the entry fees on page 14 of the Entry Kit.

Freelancers and businesses with less than 10 employees are eligible for 25% off entries. To get the discount contact awards@dandad.org.

What's the deadline for entries?
Super Early Bird: 12 January 2022
Early Bird: 16 February 2022
Deadline: 16 March 2022

When does Side Hustle take place?
Judges will vote independently for their Shortlist from 11 - 18 April. They will meet to confirm the Shortlist on 27 April. We will be in touch with successful entrants to let them know they have been awarded and to invite them to the Pitching Masterclass on Thursday 5 May 2022.

For the second and final round of judging, Entrants will pitch their idea remotely to a panel of judges on Thursday 12 May 2022. Winners will be announced officially at the D&AD Awards Ceremony in May.

What does Pitch Day involve?
Pitching will be done via Zoom. You will be joined on the call by the other finalists and the judging panel. Each finalist will take a turn to pitch their business. This can be delivered in a style to suit them, provided it is not pre-recorded and is a maximum of 7 minutes. After each pitch, the judges will have 5 minutes to ask questions. When the pitches are over, the finalists will be moved to the Zoom waiting room so that the Jury can vote for the Pencil winners. When judging is complete, the finalists will have the opportunity to rejoin Zoom to find out the results and receive feedback from the Judges on the work.

What does the Pitching Masterclass involve?
If you’re successful in the first round, you will be invited to pitch live to the D&AD Judges. For the first time, we’re offering entrants the chance to hone their pitching technique. Work with Tom Evans, our expert trainer, for tips, tricks and one-to-one feedback. Usually priced at £560 but offered to all shortlisted Side Hustlers free of charge, the Masterclass will run remotely on Thursday 5 May. Pitch Day will take place a week later, on Thursday 12 May. For more information please click here.

When will I receive my prize?
A member of the Awards team will be in touch after the D&AD Awards to send you your Pencil and ask you which Masterclass you would like to attend. Masterclasses are hosted virtually and in person (in accordance with Government Guidelines). A member of the Judging team will match you with a mentor in June, and connect you over email by mid-July.

Impact

What is D&AD Impact?
D&AD Impact celebrates creative ideas that are making a real and positive difference to the world. It also helps creative ideas grow, by providing mentoring, training, visibility and funding to work that shows potential.

Anyone using creative thinking to drive positive change can enter; whether you’re an agency, brand, nonprofit, NGO, government, collective or individual.

Impact exists within the D&AD Awards as two categories - Impact and Future Impact.

What can I enter?
You can only enter work into one category, so make sure you pick the one that's right for you.

The Impact category is for campaigns, designs and initiatives. Work must have been commercially released between 1 January 2019 and 18 April 2022*. Entrants must be able to demonstrate behavioural, environmental, social or policy change that's happened as a direct result of the work. Entrants have the chance to win a Wood, Graphite, White or Black Pencil and are eligible to enter all other categories in the D&AD Awards (except Future Impact). Re-entry into this category year-on-year is permitted, so long as you can show that additional impact has been created and submit the work into the Sustained Solution subcategory.

The Future Impact category is for early-stage designs and initiatives, including student entries, that are awarded for their potential to benefit society. Work in this category is in development and has yet to be commercially released, for example prototypes and MVPs. All work must have been developed or significantly changed between 1 January 2021 and 18 April 2022. It must have proof of concept and be commercially viable. Awarded entrants will have the right to apply for a grant from a £25,000 D&AD Impact Fund to develop their work and are invited to take part in the D&AD Impact Programme; a 12-month package of mentorship, training and peer support that's designed to support project owners with the ideation, launch and early growth of their work. Winners will also receive a D&AD Future Impact Pencil. Work entered into Future Impact is not eligible for any other Awards categories except Product Design/Prototypes, Digital Design/Beta and Side Hustle.

*Work submitted in the Impact/Sustained Solution subcategory may be commercially released prior to 1 January 2019, but it must have been commercially active between 1 January 2019 and 18 April 2022.

What do I need to be eligible for the Sustained Solution subcategory?
You need to show how the work has updated an original idea and pushed it forward, generating sustained behavioural, environmental, social or policy change over time. Work submitted in the Sustained Solution subcategory may be commercially released prior to 1 January 2019, but it must have been commercially active between 1 January 2019 and 18 April 2022. You do NOT need to have entered D&AD Impact or Creativity For Good previously to enter here.

Can I enter my work into Future Impact if it’s commercially released?
Commercially released work will only be accepted in exceptional cases, where the work has not made a tangible impact yet and would benefit from the support of the D&AD Impact Programme. Work that has been commercially released and can demonstrate effectiveness should be entered into Impact.

What happens if I enter my work into both Future Impact and Impact?
In the event that work is submitted into both categories, D&AD will assess the suitability of each category and withdraw one of the projects. You will not be eligible for a refund. If you are unsure where your work fits, please contact the D&AD Awards team for guidance.

What are the Judges looking for?
Judges are looking for innovative and inspiring uses of creativity to stimulate change and benefit society. This means that work must be responding to one of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. You will be asked to specify which ones the work is responding to as part of your submission. You can find out more about the Goals here.

In the Impact category, judges will award work that has stimulated change in one of four areas - behaviour, environment, society or policy. Winning work must be able to prove that any change is a direct result of the work submitted. The work must be fit for purpose, that is, it must do the job it was designed to do.

In the Future Impact category, judges will be awarding potential. Work must have proof of concept and demonstrate it is both scalable and commercially viable.

What can I win?
Shortlisted work will appear in the D&AD Annual, available online and freely accessible to tens of thousands of creative companies and practitioners globally.

Shortlisted entrants in the Future Impact category will also receive access to a £25,000 D&AD Impact Fund and are invited to take part in the D&AD Impact Programme; a 12-month package of mentorship, training and peer support that’s designed to support project owners with the ideation, launch and early growth of their work. The Impact Fund will be allocated by the D&AD Impact Council and must be spent on developing the work that was awarded.

Winning entrants in the Impact category will receive a Wood, Graphite, White or Black Pencil, feature in the D&AD Awards Ceremony and will have a tree planted in recognition of their work as part of The & Forest.

Winning entrants in the Future Impact category will receive a Future Impact Pencil, feature in the D&AD Awards Ceremony and will have a tree planted in recognition of their work as part of The & Forest.

Why is there no Yellow Pencil level in the Impact category?
The White Pencil replaces the Yellow Pencil in the Impact category. The White Pencil goes beyond creative excellence, to represent exceptional projects that use the power of creativity to drive behavioural, environmental, societal or policy change. The White Pencil was first conceived in 2011. Read more about its origin here.

What is the D&AD Impact Programme?
Available to all Shortlisted Entrants in the Future Impact category, the D&AD Impact Programme is a 12-month package of mentorship, training and visibility that supports project owners with the ideation, launch and early growth of their work. The Programme is created with support from D&AD trainers and the D&AD Impact Council. Our mission? To enable a cohort of Future Impacters to deliver tangible impact within 12 months.

The cohort are known as the D&AD Impacters and typically include individuals, organisations and teams working on prototypes, MVPs, beta versions or initiatives. Entrants will need to opt in to the Programme at the point of Entry and will be invited to discuss next steps with the Programme leaders if they are Shortlisted.

The programme includes:

  • Up to 2 places on the D&AD Impact Accelerator
  • 10 hours of mentoring from the D&AD Impact Council
  • Access to the D&AD Start-up School
  • Access to a creative, peer-driven network
  • Opportunity to present to the Impact Council at the Impact Showcase when the programme is complete
  • Free entry into the D&AD Awards Impact category, valid for 3 years

For more information on what the programme entails, please visit the D&AD Impact page.

How do I access the D&AD Impact Fund?
If you are Shortlisted in the Future Impact category, you will be contacted and asked if you would like to apply for a grant to develop your work. You can apply for all or part of the £25,000 fund. Money must be spent only in relation to the project or work that was awarded.

The Impact Council will meet to consider applications in the Autumn of 2022. Funds will be awarded entirely at the judges’ discretion and depending on the quality of applications from eligible Entrants. 

How much does it cost to enter?
Prices start at £288 to enter work in the Impact category.

Prices start at just £18 to enter work in the Future Impact category.

Why is it so much cheaper to enter the Future Impact category?
The entry fees for Future Impact are set at a lower rate to be more accommodating to student and solopreneurs, helping D&AD support the next generation of impacters.

Are discounts available?
Super Early Bird and Early Bird discounts are available. Please refer to the entry fees on page 14 of the Entry Kit.

Freelancers and businesses with less than 10 employees are eligible for 25% off entries. To get the discount contact awards@dandad.org.

When's the deadline for entries?
Super Early Bird: 12 January 2022
Early Bird: 16 February 2022
Deadline: 16 March 2022

When does judging take place?
Entry and judging for D&AD Impact happens at the same time as the D&AD Awards, since the two shows were merged in 2020. Winners will be announced at the D&AD Awards Ceremony from 25-26 May.

Next

Why is D&AD Next missing from the Entry Kit?
D&AD Next is taking a break, whilst we reevaluate the very best way D&AD can recognise and celebrate emerging professional creative talent. Following a review we recognise that we need to take time to look further at the specific needs of those moving up the career ladder and how we can continue to offer support from education to professional life.

In the past D&AD Next has offered entrants and winners access to D&AD's on-demand courses, mentoring with a D&AD Judge, exposure at D&AD events, and of course, a D&AD Pencil. If you are starting out in your professional career or have thoughts on what could help those that have, please get in touch and let us know!

Contact

Our awards team is on hand to help, wherever you are in the world. If you’ve begun entering and have a question, please contact one of our regional account managers:

UK, IRE & Northern Europe
Will Koper
E will.koper@dandad.org
T +44 (0)207 840 1177

US & Canada
Alex Knapp
E alex.knapp@dandad.org
T +44 (0)207 840 1172

France, Latam & Iberia
Pablo Aör Brandao
E pablo.brandao@dandad.org

Japan & Singapore
Kotoko Koya
E kotoko.koya@dandad.org
T +81 90 4736 5965

Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa
Katherine Chen
E katherine.chen@dandad.org
T +44 (0)796 8866 388
WeChat 微信 Dandadawards

Central & Eastern Europe
Vlada Kravtsova
E vlada.kravtsova@dandad.org

For all other countries, please contact awards@dandad.org or call +44 (0)207 840 1111.

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