SONAL DABRAL – MUMBAI
Sonal Dabral, a creative consultant based in Mumbai, India, is the former Chief Creative Officer of Ogilvy South and South East Asia. He recently quit advertising to pursue his passion for writing and film direction.
Over a 30-year career, Sonal has led agencies to creative glory in three different markets across Asia. Sonal is also passionate about teaching and advising young creative talent and is a visiting faculty at some of the top institutes in India.
A popular speaker, Sonal is invited to speak at major festivals and events across the globe. He likes to speak on subjects covering Creativity, Storytelling and Advertising.
Sonal’s work has earned numerous awards at top global advertising award shows. A respected juror he has judged or chaired almost every major international and regional award show. He was also invited to be at Cannes Lions 2020.
Since going independent, besides working on a couple of pet feature film projects, Sonal has made good use of the Covid lockdown to start his own chat show on creativity, advertising, marketing and beyond, called Streaming with Sonal Dabral. It can be found on his YouTube channel.
NANDITA ABRAHAM – DELHI
President of Pearl Academy, Nandita Abraham has over 25 years of experience across corporates and academia in the US, Hong Kong and India. Since joining Pearl Academy in 2001 as a faculty member, she has held various positions including Head of the Corporate Relations & Marketing departments (Mumbai campus) and Executive Vice President. Nandita recently spearheaded the path breaking Pearl Academy – Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI) collaboration, which sets a new benchmark for industry-academia partnership.
Nandita is on the Executive Committee, IFFTI – International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes, and the FICCI Higher Education Committee. She has been a member of the CII National Committee of Design, a member of the Research, Education and Industry Committees at IFFTI, and has presented her research on pedagogy, employability and international collaboration in several countries. She has been invited to give lectures at University of Delaware, US; London College of Fashion, UK; and Philadelphia University, US.
G V SREEKUMAR – MUMBAI
Professor of IDC School of Design, IIT Bombay, Prof. G. V. Sreekumar’s areas of specialization are typography, calligraphy, publication design, information design, anatomy and figure drawing and design pedagogy. He created a new field called H-H-I – Human-Human Interaction, which focuses on the human-centric aspects of design and everyday life.
Prof. Sreekumar studied Visual Communication at IDC, IIT Bombay and Applied Art at M.S. University, Baroda. Prior to joining IIT Bombay as a faculty member in the year 2000, he worked as an art director and infographics designer for many publications including the popular computer magazine CHIP, Digit, Intelligent Investor, The Times of India Group, Indian Express Group and Jasubhai Digital Media. Some of his magazine redesign projects include Chandamama, Overdrive, Savvy, Society etc.
SUDHIR SHARMA – PUNE
Sudhir is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Design-India Magazine. He is a pioneering Design and Business transformation consultant.
At ValueLabs, Sudhir’s mandate is to set up a World Class Strategic Design consulting practice.
TARUN DEEP GIRDHER – AHMEDABAD
Tarun is a design educator and graphic designer currently teaching graphic design at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India’s premier design institute.
He has over 24 years of experience in design education, and professional design practice. Though his expertise goes beyond the realms of traditional graphic design, he has a loving bias for print, typography and publication design. He is the co-founder of @35daysofgurmukhi on instagram.
He has served as a juror in several international and national competitions and design including Poster for Tomorrow, Campus Diaries 25 under 25 Talent hunt, Typography Day etc.
GURMEET RAI – DELHI
Gurmeet S Rai is an architect with specialisation in heritage conservation and management. She is among the first generation conservation architects in India and has worked in the area of architectural conservation, management plans for world heritage sites, urban conservation strategies for historic settlements, sustainable cultural heritage tourism, preparation of advisory and policy documents.
Gurmeet was awarded ‘Award of Distinction’ under the Asia Pacific Architectural Heritage Awards in the years 2002 and 2004 following which she has been on the jury.
She is currently a member of the Steering committee of TERRA 2021, World Congress on Earthen Architectural Heritage (Getty Conservation Institute), Vice President ICOMOS India and serves on several national advisory and academic bodies related to heritage.
DINESH KORJAN – AHMEDABAD
Proponent of the Strategic use of Design for the larger good.
Founder Partner of erstwhile Studio Korjan, Ahmedabad, Dinesh is one of the pioneers of Product Design practice in India. Currently his passion is in developing a Plan D – the use of Design to solve larger, real world problems. He considers a systems approach will enhance the effectiveness of Design and will lead to transformative interventions.
He is a Design Mentor with the National Innovation Foundation and complements his practice with active engagement in academics and teaches at many leading design schools including Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, National Institute of Design (NID) Ahmedabad, Faculty of Design, CEPT University Ahmedabad, Social Design Program at Ambedkar University Delhi, Srishti School of Art Design & Technology Bangalore, Indian Institute of Crafts & Design, Jaipur, NIFT Gandhinagar. Recently, He has been involved in conceptualising (InDes) The School of Integral Design as a founding member.
Dinesh believes that knowing what to design or whether one should design at all is currently the most important question.
KAMAL SAGAR – BENGALURU
Kamal Sagar, an architect, and an alumnus of IIT Kharagpur, is the founder of Total Environment, a design-led Real Estate firm headquartered in Bangalore (India). Kamal questioned the very fundamentals of mass housing leading to the genesis of Total Environment in 1996. 24 years and counting, with a product-led, customer-centric approach, the organisation has delivered homes to more than 1,200 families – tailored to fit unique lifestyle and needs of each family. Leading through design and a combination of technology & craftsmanship, each Total Environment home is a sensitively detailed, high-quality space that celebrates nature by embracing it.
Kamal’s contributions to real estate have not only redefined housing, but also influenced a generation of architects, designers, engineers and craftsmen to deliver the most beautiful living spaces of the highest quality.
Kamal has won several Awards at National and International levels.
HAYLEY HUGHES – TEXAS
Hayley Hughes is a UX Manager for the Polaris Design System at Shopify. She formerly pioneered the Design Language at IBM, and led the evolution of the Design System at Airbnb.
Hayley’s work has been featured in Women Who Design, Under Consideration, and “26 Innovations by 26 Women.” She is a certified IBM Enterprise Design Thinking Leader and contributed to the Adobe + Idean e-book, “Hack the Design System.”
She has shared her scaffolded model for a “Design System of Human Needs” around the world in 12 different countries and participated in webinars with Adobe, Invision, and Monotype.
NISHA NARAYANAN – DELHI
An experienced leader with a proven track record of over 24 years. She has been instrumental in scaling the brand RED FM to where it is right now.
She has spearheaded in building sub-brands out of RJ’s like Malishka & Raunac from the RED FM’s table along with various IPs across the country.
She is also a member of the core committee at the FICCI Radio Forum since 2008 & Senior VP with AROI (Association of Radio Operators for India)
Won the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke’s ‘Business Leader of the Year’ and ‘Most trusted COO by WCRC’.
VIKAS SATWALEKAR – MUMBAI
Currently working as a Design Consultant, Prof. Vikas Satwalekar has nurtured and mentored design education over three decades as a member of its Visual Communication faculty. He was NID’s Executive Director from 1989 to 2000.
Prof. Satwalekar has headed design teams of several prestigious exhibitions, such as ‘The Discovery of India’ Exposition, Nehru Centre, Mumbai, ‘India Exhibit’, Commonwealth Institute, London, ‘Energy is Life’ a Theme exhibition at the World Energy Congress 1983, New Delhi.
As a graphic designer, he has designed corporate identity programs for organisations such as Mother Dairy, Hindustan Lever, Voltas, Tata Institute of Social Sciences(TISS).
In 2007, Prof. Vikas Satwalekar was presented with a Grandmaster Commendation at the Icograda Design Week in India Conference, IIT Bombay.
SRINI SRINIVASAN – PALO ALTO
CEO of LUMIUM, a creative product design company based in Palo Alto, California, Srini Srinivasan is very passionate about product design and usability. He has a technology and business background in instrumentation, consumer electronics, telecom and wireless equipment.
Srinivasan served as Treasurer on the Board of Directors for the World Design Organization from 2015 to 2017, and was named President-elect for the 2017 to 2019 term. He served on the panel of innovation judges for CES 2012 and other industry events and has run non-profit programs. Srinivasan attended an executive education program at Haas Business School, UC Berkeley.
ABHIJIT BANSOD – BANGALORE
Abhijit Bansod, a NID postgraduate, has been part of the new age design movement in India. After decade-long experience with Titan Design Studio, he founded Studio ABD in 2008 to create an open platform to discover new facets of contemporary Indian Design.
Abhijit believes in celebrating the creativity that combines fragments of Indian tradition with cutting-edge technology and fuses cultural motifs and new age thinking. They conjure up sophisticated products that resonate with India’s rich past. Propelled by the humor, craft, rituals, people, situations, and heritage of India, they create products that speak a unique language- an Indian design vocabulary.
RIKKE HANSEN – KOLDING
Rikke is a Graphic Designer and Educator. For several years she has been working with product development, branding and consulting for companies and organisations. She works on and researches design development projects and has her own design studio doing print and digital design.
She is Vice Chairman at the Danish Association for Book Crafting. She has been a juror in several international Poster Biennals and Design competitions worldwide. COFOD excellence Award winner. Graphis Silver, Gold and Platinum Award winner. China International Poster Biennal Silver winner. She has been exhibiting, giving lectures and workshops internationally in Europe, Middle East, Asia and America.
KADAMBARI SAHU – HYDERABAD
Kadambari heads the Design function, UXG, at ValueLabs. Her practice in design allows her to work on intangibles and tangibles aspects of design, creating a holistic design strategy and customer experience for the users. These designs can be in different media breaking the walls between digital, physical and service aspects of design. Her strength lies in storytelling, to create engaging, playful, and meaningful experiences.
She is an alumna of NID, where she did her post-graduation in New Media Design. This has let her examine the impact that technologies have on human interactions and culture. She has always been curious about the role of design in everyday life and the ways in which human interactions can be mediated, shaped, enhanced, or augmented through technologies.
KIEU HUYEN PHAM – HANOI
With over 25 years’ experience, Kieu has worked on hundreds of research and design development projects, created and managed brands in all areas of economic, he is also a strategic advisor for a number of businesses in the wide field of industries. Kieu also is founder associate of the Design Alliance Asia, Asia Communication Design Alliance and Vietnam Design Network. Early 2020, he initiated the Vietnam Bamboo Forum; plan to organise the First Vietnam Bamboo Week.
He now is principal of K Group, a business entity incorporated K Design, KVH Marketing, Experts in Action Consulting, and Haki Asia Brand Invest.
HRRIDAYSH DESHPANDE – PUNE
Hrridaysh has been in the field of education for over 26 years. Presently, Hrridaysh is the Director at Ajeenkya DY Patil Group, member of Governing Body & Director of Ajeenkya DY Patil University and Director of Grand Port Hospital.
He is associated with the India Design Council (IDC) as its consultant advisor. Over the years Hrridaysh has acquired proficiency in business innovation strategy and design driven Innovation. Hrridaysh has assisted leading companies across a range of industries. He is an experienced, enthusiastic, and energetic educator and innovation Facilitator.
SUBRATA BHOWMICK – AHMEDABAD
Subrata Bhowmick is an alumni of National Institute of Design (NID), where as a student of Industrial Design he specialized in textiles. Later he studied in Europe and Japan.
He is one of the most lauded designers of India with over 60 prestigious national and international awards in Graphics, Advertising, Photography, Book Design, Packaging and Poster Design and others. He was former Design Director of the Calico Museum of Textiles and the Calico Design Center. He was also the Design Editor of Marg Publications. He has designed several important art books for Mapin.
He has been awarded the Art Director of the Year, twice, by CAG, Graphic Designers Association of India, and photographer of the year. His designs have been exhibited for several times in the World Graphics. He was the National Creative Director of Mudra Communication Ltd., over 2 decades. He has also created the Corporate Identity and Textile Mills & Training Center for Oman Textile Company, Muscat, and several calendar designs for Japan and Switzerland over the last 40 years.
In 2016 he was awarded “ The Lifetime Achievement Award” by Edutainment AWARDS 2016 for his Contribution towards Communication & Design Education. In 2017 he has been honored “Honorary Fellow of ADI” by ADI (Association of Designers of India) in recognition of his meritorious contribution in the field of design, handicrafts, mentorship and the high esteem in which he is held by members of the profession.
SERTAC ERSAYIN – ISTANBUL
Sertaç Ersayın has done his graduation from Metu Faculty of Architecture in Industrial Product Design and Koç University in Business Administration. He has developed designs and projects for many international brands in the building and durable consumer groups under Koç Holding’s Engineering, Technology Development and Industrial Design departments.
He worked as an industrial designer and design director, then as Director of the Far East in China and HK, taking charge of the management of JV in DonGuan province, China. In addition to his experiences in the field of white goods, small household appliances and consumer products, Ersayın worked in developing systems and products in the fields of holistic bathroom projects, coating materials, furniture.
He currently provides consultancy and design development services in many different areas of Design in his company, which he is the founder of. Ersayın also serves as president of the industrial designers society of Turkey and Creative Industries Council. He is also a Design Turkey Executive Board Member and Member of Board of Directors of WDO. Ersayın has been a jury member in more than 300 National International Design Competitions in his 30 years of experience.
ADIL JAL DARUKHANAWALA – PUNE
A pioneering Indian automotive journalist, Adil Jal Darukhanawala has over 40 years of experience spanning magazines, events, and books. He presently heads Fast Bikes India magazine and is the first Indian ever to be honored at the Guild of Motoring Awards in the UK for his work on the Indian motoring history.
NAUSHAD FORBES – PUNE
A well known industrialist, Dr. Naushad Forbes is Co-Chairman, Forbes Marshall, India’s leading steam engineering and control instrumentation company. He is on the Board of several educational institutions and public companies and was recently listed in the Indian Express list of the 100 most influential Indians. He is also the Chairman of Centre for Technology, Innovation and Economic Research in Pune.
He is a famous name in Indian design circles. As former Chairman Governing Council National Institute of Design (NID), and Chairman India Design Council (IDC), Dr. Forbes has been able to work at bridging the still large gap between industry and design in the country.
Initiated by POOL Magazine in 2015, "India’s Best Design Awards" are the first to recognize Design Studios for their professional work, business practices and transparency. INDI Design started publishing POOL Magazine in 2010 with the mission of bringing Indian talent in Design, Innovation, and Art into the limelight. The digital avatar of this monthly print magazine is available for annual subscription at www.indipool.com
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