Anne Asensio is appointed to the Board of Directors of the World Design Organization (WDO). The French designer joins the 10 other members of the office for the period 2019-2021. The list of board members was unveiled at the 31st edition of the World Design Assembly ™ which was held in Hyderabad, India on October 11-12.
Placing people at the heart of the designnu process
Since 1957, the WDO, formerly the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (Icsid), has been promoting industrial design as a vector of economic, social, cultural and environmental growth. Originally made up of 12 associations, the WDO, headquartered in Montreal (Canada), today brings together 140 organizations in 40 countries that have a common vision: to place people at the center of design.
Among the tools for promoting industrial design, the WDO has the World Design Capital (WDC) program. Every 2 years, the international organization rewards cities for their use of design in a process of economic, social, cultural and environmental development. The French city of Lille has been named the world design capital for 2020. For 1 year, the city of the North will highlight urban policies and sustainable innovations that improve the quality of life.
Integrate design into the uses of tomorrow
Throughout her career, Anne Asensio has strived to go where she was not expected, always one step ahead: at Renault, she participated in the invention of the car for living; recruited by General Motors, she creates a brand center and gives meaning to brands by working on the emotional levers of retro-design. Vice-president of Design Experience at Dassault Systèmes, she supports the technological and digital transformation of manufacturers by placing them at the heart of the uses and needs of tomorrow, in an empathic and systemic design thinking approach. Today, with the same communicative energy, she defines experiences as she drew objects yesterday. Her career is one of those that are readily cited as an example, with this very French penchant for emphasizing the exception that confirms the rule: after Fine Arts, then Ensaama, she joined the group in the 1980s. Renault and in 1997 succeeded in being named Woman of the Year in the automotive industry. In 2000, General Motors came to seek the expert to take the head of the design department and revitalize its brands. And it is the visionary that Dassault Systèmes recruited in 2008 to consolidate design at the heart of strategic issues. Meeting with an experienced woman.
What motivated this shift from industrial design to experience design?
AA: It’s a real choice, linked to a meeting. I was a car designer, I designed cars for different brands in various countries. With hindsight, I find that it was a fine, magnificent work, focused on the exterior form, the interior experience, the colors, the materials: the objective was to offer something beautiful in which we were going to have the pleasure. Then the 2000s saw the arrival of digital in an exponential way, there was the bubble and, above all, accessibility and multiplication which, for some, transformed their vision of the world, and I was part of it …