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Space Matrix in collaboration with Sir JJ College of Architecture concludes the second edition of its India Dream Big Designathon 2022

The event aimed at honing future design talent to innovate and design the workplace of tomorrow amidst changing workplace scenarios of today

 Space Matrix, a leading multinational workplace design, and building consultancy firm recently concluded the second innings of the India Dream Big Designathon 2022 in association with Sir JJ College of Architecture, Mumbai. The event was held at the Space Matrix BetaLab in Gurugram, Haryana.

The illustrious judging panel included Mr. Suresh Narayanan, Chairman & Managing Director – Nestlé India Limited; Rishabh Goel, Managing Director and Partner at The Boston Consulting Group; Sahil Vachani, CEO & Managing Director, Max Ventures and Industries Limited; Ridhi Kale, Senior Associate Editor with India Today HOME and Jaiprakash Aildasani, Chief Operating Officer, India, Space Matrix.

Space Matrix has been a driver of change in the design industry. With the Dream Big Designathon, the company aims to engage with and give back to the design community with an aim to nurture young talent by giving them a live design challenge, relevant to the current times, for them to work on and for them to learn in real-time under the guidance of industry experts from within Space Matrix. This year’s challenge was particularly interesting as it targets the fast-growing start-up sector. The students needed to design a creative workspace for a start-up keeping in mind their dynamic nature as well as the changing nature of work.

Out of all the students who participated in this endeavour, 5 finalists were flown down to the Space Matrix Beta Lab to present in person to the jury. While two of the finalists focused on fashion startups, one focused on a pet care and pet cafe concept, one of the finalists focused on the growing sector of social influencer firms and the fifth finalist looked at a travel startup.

The India Dream Big Designathon was a learning opportunity for future design students. The participants went through several rounds of mentoring and nurturing, over 3 months, by Space Matrix’s leading designers Titir Dey, Managing Director Design, Swaviman Das, Director Design – India, and Daksh Sharma, Design Lead who are also some of the most coveted designers in the workplace design space.

Vaishnavi Parmar emerged as the winner and Maria Ujjainwala and Ayushi Thakur followed close as the runners-up. All the interactions were carried out through in-person campus visits with designers from Space Matrix guiding students through the entire process. The entries were judged on contextual design, innovation, ideation, purpose alignment, and presentation skills.

Speaking about the experience, Akshay Lakhanpal, CEO India, Space Matrix, said, “The whole experience of organizing the Designathon this year was exhilarating especially when the inaugural season for India was online.  The world of work and the nature of workplaces in terms of design and employee expectations have changed drastically in the last few years. This is where the Designathon aimed at understanding how these budding talents conceptualize the dynamic workplace of today and the future. It was also an opportunity for them to innovate and collaborate through real-world exposure to workspace design and understanding how they approach the challenges ahead was a roaring success and we look forward to enhancing the ambit of this program next year”.

Titir Dey, Managing Director Design, Space Matrix, said, “As mentors, I think the most exciting part of the Dream Big Designathon has been to experience firsthand the creativity of the new generation and the journey has been as exciting for us as it has for the students. And I am so happy to see that the future of the design industry is in such safe hands”.

Adding further, Rajesh Rokade, Assistant Professor, Sir JJ College of Architecture, said, “Our institution has always given importance to ideas that the younger generation brings. In this regard, we are happy to have partnered with a brand like Space Matrix which is known for its out-of-the-box approach to design. I congratulate the winners and others who participated in the event. We hope to continue this association for a long time to come”.

Designathon is an opportunity created for industry institute interaction and what an interaction it was. The jury members are not only eminent personalities and contributors to their own industries but were also supremely passionate both about design thinking and nurturing young talent. On the other hand, the participants were extremely confident budding designers who took on real-world problems and designed solutions for them within the constraints of the real world. This led to extremely professional presentations and some very constructive feedback to help participants hone their skills as designers and thinkers.

Suresh Naraynan, Chairman and MD Nestle India limited said, The Space Matrix Dream Big Designathon was a very refreshing and great experience – it was really heartening to see the level of creativity and maturity of thought and concept these young students brought to the table. The brief presented to students of designing for a start-up, I felt was not only very relevant to the times but equally challenging to design and all students delivered beautiful designs. I wish I had been a few years younger to have been able to work in some of the spaces they had designed! A lot of credit also goes to Space Matrix for creating such an opportunity for the students and also mentoring them to reach a level where they are ready to enter the industry and take on the future of work.

Sahil Vachani, MD & CEO at Max Ventures and Industries limited said ‘Huge compliments to Space Matrix for taking this initiative. I think to really inculcate and incubate talent in India and for India is the way forward.’ Rishabh Goel, MD & Partner at BCG said “Being here at the Designathon today was a wonderful experience. It was a great experience as a judge looking at this level of creativity and giving feedback on how they can become more effective designers going forward. All kudos to Space Matrix for organizing this and cultivating the next generation of talent and they are playing their role as an ecosystem orchestrator absolutely fantastically”.

The winners received cash prizes worth INR 1Lac and internships at the Space Matrix studios, with the winner getting to spend 2-3 months in the Singapore Studio. The Space Matrix Dream Big Designathon will continue to collaborate with prestigious design institutions to carry this unique concept forward. The underlying idea is to build a strong design culture and a connected fraternity of designers in India and the rest of Asia.

About Space Matrix

Founded in 2001, the design practice of Space Matrix has evolved into a dynamic, agile, 21st-century digital enterprise; a design consultancy that specializes in workplace design. The firm has developed a unique client focus that creates and delivers profitable, sustainable, and future-ready workplace solutions. Its continuing mission is to revolutionize the delivery of design and build services in both Asia and globally. The firm has relevant project experience in over 80 cities and 16 office locations in Australia, China, India, Philippines. Thailand, Singapore (HQ), and the United States consistently ranks in Interior Design Magazine’s Top 100 Design Giants for Office Design as #1 in India and #6 Internationally and has won multiple International Property Awards.

Teamwork, Integrity, and Excellence guide the selection of clients, relationships with business partners, the recruitment of team members, and the delivery of services. The firm has over 400 professionals globally and continues to push the boundaries in workplace transformation.

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