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NewsNov 14, 2023

Over 2300 creatives came together for DesignThinkers Toronto

Audience POV of RGD DT stage

While Paula Scher, at 75, declared that she is not done yet, Chris Do provided practical tools to master your next sales pitch. 

On November 2–3 the creative industry came together for our DesignThinkers Conference to celebrate everything design.

Hugs were exchanged, ideas shared and connections made—in what was our highest attendance ever; the energy was electrifying.

With an option to choose from three streams of talks, attendees also had opportunities to join studio tours and hand-on workshops, engage in conversations with peers on pertinent topics at the roundtable discussions, participate in speed networking and much more.

The conference also had the option for live streaming for those who preferred to attend from their home or office. All attendees have access to presentation recordings until the end of January, after which time they will be made available to RGD Members. 

Pre-conference programming featured Accessibility Workshops by Meggan Van Harten RGD and Davide Dorigo Provisional RGD from Design de Plume, guided tours to leading creative studios in Toronto and a ceremony celebrating of the winners of the 2023 Branding Awards.

Day 1 of the Conference began with keynotes by Chris Do and Forest Young and featured talks by speakers who included Emmi Salonen, Farai Madzima, Noel Cottrell, Rejane Dal Bello, Renato Fernandez, Dalit Shalom, Paul Trani, concluding with delegates' favourite talk by Paula Scher. Day 1 closed with a Party at Bier Markt, where delegates and speakers connected over delicious hors d'oeuvres, drinks and conversations.

Day 2 was packed with as much inspiration as the first with keynotes by Tina Roth Eisenberg and Eleni Beveratou and talks by Lauren Scully & Brian Studak, Min Lew, Catalina Estrada, Zipeng Zhu, Jay Demetillo, Dorothéa Bozicolona-Volpe, Krys Blackwood, Hajj Flemings, ending the day with a Keynote by Stefan Sagmeister. The day also featured a panel discussion on collaborative design workflows and a Never Have I Ever session with Stefan Sagmeister, Min Lew, Forest Young, Eleni Beveratou and Tina Roth Eisenberg hosted by Julian Brown RGD.

Delegates and speakers were invited to share thoughts on social media using the hashtag #rgdDT. Here are a handful of posts:

Thank you to our volunteer photographers Nadia Otake Provisional RGD & Eric Forest RGD for day 1 and day 2 of the conference.


Thank you also to Industry Partners: Adobe, Acumen (signage), Flash, Mohawk, Forge Media + Design (website) Porter (travel) and Sid Lee (branding); to Gold Sponsors Cella, CtrlPrint, Deloitte, Domtar, Monotype, Moveable, Rightsleeve, The Futur, York University School of Continuing Studies and Silver & Bronze Sponsors AZURE, Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Dalton Maag, Issues Magazine Shop, Mitchell Sandham, StickerYou, Swipe Design and WeirFoulds LLP.


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