We are collaborating with the Design Center of the Philippines for 'Design Counts', a pioneering project to map the design economy in the Philippines. We have commissioned a study to analyse the economic contribution and value chain of the design industry by mapping the design ecosystem of nine cities: Manila, Makati, Quezon City, Taguig, Baguio, Pampanga, Cebu, Davao and Cagayan de Oro.


In the UK, research studies have helped spur the growth of the creative industries sector that in 2018, it contributed £111 billion to the UK economy. 

  • The results from the mapping project will guide the policy makers in formulating a data-driven and evidence-based National Design Policy as mandated by the Philippine Design Competitiveness Act of 2013 or Act No. 10557.
  • Through ‘Design Counts’, we aim to understand the value chain of the sector and contribute to the recognition of the role of design in a growing creative economy. 
  • The study will nurture strategies that drive innovation, sharpen national competitiveness and uplift the Philippine design economy to a global scale.

Pushpin Visuals

An adult woman wearing a printed shawl and necklace speaking at a podium with a microphone. Beside her is a transparent vertical rectangular testimonial box with the quoted text…we hope to provide an evidence-based model of the country’s design ecosystem…on how we can unleash the power of design to nurture globally competitive mico-small-medium enterprises and contribute design-led strategies to nation building. Rhea Matute Executive Director Design Center of the Philippines


  • We invited local leaders in the Philippines from different design sectors to participate in a design scoping workshop held on March 2021. This helped contextualise design and identify the sector categories that make up the Philippine design ecosystem.
  • Check out these insightful visual summaries from the workshop .


Research partners

We are working with the following research experts from the UK and the Philippines to deliver this mapping project.

Nordicity Nordicity is an international creative sector consultancy specialising in research, policy, economics and sustainable development. They have undertaken a wide variety of cultural heritage, social and creative enterprise projects internationally. These include studies for the design sector and in people-led approaches.
Bayan Academy Bayan Academy for Social Entrepreneurship and Human Resource Development or Bayan Academy is a non-profit subsidiary of ABS CBN Bayan Foundation. Established in 2009, they are known for their social enterprise and education work in the Philippines.
Anna Whicher Anna Whicher is the Head of Policy Design at PDR (International Design and Research Centre), a design and innovation research institution set up by Cardiff Metropolitan University. She is responsible for developing partnerships, conducting research and evaluating impact for public and private organisations in Wales and Scotland.

The results of the design economy mapping will be presented at the International Design Conference 2021, a flagship activity of the Design Center of the Philippines.

This initiative is supported by Connections Through Culture, a regional British Council-led programme of research and insights on the arts and creative economy in Southeast Asia. 

See also

External links