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The D&AD Impact Programme


  • What is it?

    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. It’s available to anyone shortlisted in the Future Impact category.

    A Future Impact cohort typically includes individuals, organisations and teams working on prototypes, MVPs, projects in testing or those that have recently launched. Through the programme we aim to to enable a cohort of creative thinkers, known as D&AD Impacters, to deliver tangible impact within 12 months.

    "The D&AD Impact Programme has given us a shrewd understanding of business structures and how to make our idea pay... We could never have imagined at the beginning of the programme, all the different books and projects we are now working on. It has introduced us to amazing contacts within the industry who have been generous with their time and amazingly enthusiastic. Thank you so much D&AD!!! " — Georgina Potier & Jake Abrams, Get Better Books, 2021–2022 Cohort

  • What can I win?

    Anyone shortlisted in the Future Impact category will receive place on the D&AD Impact Programme and the opportunity to apply for a development grant from the £25,000 D&AD Impact Fund. The Impact Programme includes:

    —Places on the D&AD Impact Accelerator for project owners
    —12 months of mentoring, courtesy of the D&AD Impact Council and Anyone app's global community of entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders—billed as a 'marketplace for advice'
    —Access to D&AD’s online courses for a year
    —The opportunity to present your work live to the D&AD Impact Council during the summer showcase
    —Access to a creative, peer-driven network
    —Free entry into the D&AD Awards Impact category, valid for 3 years

    Regardless of whether you would like to participate in the programme, your work will appear in the D&AD Annual, online and freely accessible to the global creative community. In 2023 this reached an audience of over 200,000 people, three quarters of which are outside the UK. Winners receive a Future Impact Pencil, a symbol of creative excellence, and a tree planted in recognition of their award.

  • Impact Accelerator

    The D&AD Impact Accelerator is a tailor-made bootcamp for people shortlisted in the Future Impact category. It's a unique blend of expert advice, practical workshops, mentoring, talks and peer-to-peer support; all designed to help your idea flourish and your business thrive.

    Run by the D&AD Foundation team, trainers and members of the D&AD Impact Council, the accelerator includes approximately 20 hours of expert learning, delivered online and from the comfort of your home.

    When submitting your work you will be asked whether you would like to attend, what you hope to gain from participating, and what you can offer your peers. You will be able to apply for multiple tickets, depending on the number of project owners.

    "As well as having appropriate advice, it was a great chance to extend our international creative community further." — Tomomi Sayuda, AICOM, 2021–2022 Cohort

  • Impact Fund

    The D&AD Impact Fund is a source of financial support for our awarded entrants. Anyone shortlisted in the Future Impact category is invited to apply for a development grant from the fund. Worth £25,000, applications will need to show how the money will be used toward the development of their awarded project. The funds must be spent within 12 months of being received.

    The Fund will be allocated by the D&AD Impact Council at their discretion and based on the information provided in applications. In 2022, recipients of the fund included:

    —Get Better Books - £12,000 to hire a business management specialist and create new interventions for cancer care.
    ​—Baby BSL: Where is the Bird - £9,700 to develop, illustrate and print a 24-page zine-style activity book for the 3 - 12 year old market.
    —Breathe - £3,300 to develop a new prototype for innovative chest binder. Read more about Baby BSL's project and the Impact Fund here.

    Nb. D&AD does not claim any ownership of, or expect any financial return from, projects that receive funding.

  • Eligibility

    Future Impact is for designs and initiatives that are on their way to being launched into the world. Prototypes, MVPs and work undergoing testing are all appropriate here. New product or service lines are also eligible under the same conditions.

    We do not accept ideas without proof of concept and campaign communications are not be eligible.

    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.

    For more details around the eligibility, please see page 12 in the Entry Kit.

The Impact Council

Imagine your work being seen by a collection of senior figures from across the creative, investment and social impact space. The D&AD Impact Council consists of designers, brands, CMOs, entrepreneurs, investors and tech stars. All of them are working towards a fairer, more sustainable future in their chosen field. All of them are an invaluable resource for you and your business. They judge the entries, help to mentor Future Impacters, and most of all, they help our winners thrive.

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