Beyond Borders

Beyond Borders

Sponsored by

Create a campaign, service, product or environment designed to promote inter-cultural understanding.

Challenge and scope 

This brief asks you to design a way to promote engagement between people of diverse background in ways that recognise difference, create connections and cultivate respect.

There has never been a more connected world, whether through travel, trade, migration, education, or media. This truly global age has connected people and places in ways never before imagined, yet at the same time, there is a turn to more local commitments, anxiety about the loss of identities, concern that larger forces – cultural, political, economic and religious – are more a threat than a benefit, and fears, ideas and movements that turn differences into divisions and conflicts. Most people’s identity has many aspects, such as family and friends, values, gender, ethnicity, religion or belief, locality, region, nation, language, education, ability/disability, health, politics, and many more. Most societies are also full of differences that interact with each other in a vast variety of ways. 

As part of your research, you are encouraged to think about one or more of the following questions: 

  • How can all these identities and differences interact in ways that make for good relationships, and for a society and a world where there is mutual understanding, respect and peace rather than misunderstanding, prejudice, suspicion, conflict and violence? 
  • How can we live together better – more peacefully and happily – than we do at present? How can we cultivate wiser and more effective ways of coping with our differences in many spheres of life? 
  • How can our world and each of its societies and localities be healthily diverse rather than dangerously divided? How can the dignity of each person be respected? 
  • How can there be connectivity that works for the common good? 
  • Can the resources of the world’s cultures, traditions, educational systems, technologies, media, philosophies, world views or religions be drawn upon to serve the common good? 

The aim is not to foster a homogeneous world where all differences are eliminated, but rather to find better ways of shaping a world where there are continuing differences on important matters, but these do not lead to hostility, conflict, and unhealthy divisions. To achieve this fuller, more informed and respectful understanding across differences is vital, and engagement with people who embody these differences is essential. 

Your challenge is to find ways to achieve better understanding and engagement and understand how design can play a role in people’s ability to recognise and reflect on their own perspectives, as well as the perspectives of others, and to engage with them in positive ways. 

When thinking about this brief, keep in mind that a central finding of behavioural science is that simply knowing how we ‘should’ behave to live our lives in positive ways doesn’t necessarily change our actions and behaviour. The way we behave is profoundly influenced by what people around us (friends, family, colleagues, neighbours, celebrities) are doing, the way the environment around us is designed and by options that are more prominent, convenient, or appealing. Solutions to this brief don’t necessarily have to be overtly about ‘promoting inter-cultural understanding’; there are some great examples of things that can inherently do this (for example through music, sport, food/cooking – see the Toolkit for more examples) while also appealing to people for other reasons. 

There can be no question of ‘one size fits all’ in responding to this brief. Each culture, place, sphere of life, and so on, is specific and distinctive, so there is a need for innumerable initiatives to deal with all the particular differences and problems. You can focus on any area, place or setting, but what we are looking for are design solutions that are effective in helping with specific issues, and at the same time are signs of hope for a better world. 

For the purposes of illustration only, the following would all be viable responses: 

  • an event, activity, toy or game that brings people together 
  • a behaviour change campaign around celebrating difference 
  • a service, environment or urban design proposal that facilitates inter-cultural interactions 
  • a visual aid or prop that helps to create connections 


There are two awards available for this brief: 

Marketing Trust Award of £2000 Paid Placement at The Chartered Institute of Marketing 

Remuneration: £2500 (UK Living Wage)

Duration: 8 weeks

Location: Maidenhead, Berkshire

The judging panel may decide on more than one winner/s and will allocate the awards accordingly. In addition, the judging panel may award commendations. 

Sponsored by


With additional support from


Judging criteria 

There are six criteria that your entry will be measured against – make sure that your submission materials demonstrate that your solution meets these criteria: 

  1. Social and environmental benefit – how does your design benefit society and/or the environment? 
  2. Research and insights – how did you investigate this issue? What were your key insights? 
  3. Design thinking – how did your research and insights inform your solution? How did you develop, test, iterate and refine your concept? Demonstrate the journey you’ve been through to the end result 
  4. Commercial awareness – does your journey make sense from a financial point of view? What is the competitive environment your solution would sit within? 
  5. Execution – we are looking for a design that is pleasing and looks and feels well-resolved. 
  6. Magic – we are looking for a bit of ‘magic’ – a surprising or lateral design solution that delights 

Submission Requirements 

All entries must be submitted through our online entry system.

As you prepare your submission, please ensure that: 

  • you do NOT include your name, university/ college or other identifying marks anywhere on your submission 
  • none of your submission files exceed 10MB – this is the maximum size for each individual file / board when you submit online 

The submission requirements are: 

  • 1 x A3 PDF Hero image with 1 sentence description A singular ‘poster image’ that conveys the essence of your project, plus a 1 sentence strapline or description 
  • 1 x A3 PDF Big Idea Summary A single A3 PDF page describing your ‘Big Idea’ in less than 250 words. This should clearly explain what your solution is, the specific area of need it addresses, and how you arrived at the solution
  • 4 x A3 PDF Boards Outlining Your Proposal 4 pages describing your proposal and demonstrating that you have met the six judging criteria. Each board should include a heading. Number each board in the top right hand corner, in the order they should be viewed by the judges 
  • 10 x A3 PDF Pages of Supporting Material Up to 10 A3 PDFs of additional material illustrating your development process – this could include scanned pages of your sketchbook or computer modelling/sketches (if applicable) 
  • Optional YouTube / Vimeo + website links Please note that we cannot guarantee supporting films and websites will be viewed at the shortlisting stage. If you have created digital materials, we recommend referencing them (for example by including labelled film stills or website screen grabs) in your 4 main PDF boards 

Eligibility + entry infomation

Download entry guidelinesDownload this brief

18 January 2017

Competition opens for entries

8 Febuary 2017

4pm GMT
£25 early bird deadline

8 March 2017

4pm GMT
£35 final entry deadline

20 March 2017

2-stage judging process begins

1 June 2017

2016/17 winners announced