The KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD is an international product design competition that’s all about bringing together proposals for projects the future needs and giving them form.



The KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD 2023 will be the 20th competition, and this time, we’ll be calling for works based on the theme “embrace.”
This word carries meanings like “inclusion” and “hugging.” In that same vein, we are looking for product design proposals that make people feel cheerful and positive by accepting and acknowledging the differences between people and the challenges society is facing.

—The main application guidelines for the KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD 2023


1. Theme: embrace
Diversity inspires harmony.
Opposites sustain balance.
Chaos nurtures beauty.
Contrast creates depth.
Distance drives expansion.
Conflict urges renewal.


How can we use design to embrace
different people, diverse lifestyles, uncertain times,
and the ever-changing environment of our planet?


Difference, change, uncertainty—
Can they be a beginning?
Can they make progress?
Can they be our future?


2. Eligible entries:
Any stationery, furniture or tool used in working, learning and living scenes


3. Registration and submission:
July 29 to 12:00 (noon) JST on October 11, 2022


4. Judges:
- Masashi Kawamura (Chief Creative Officer of Whatever Inc.)
- Tsuyoshi Tane (Founder of Atelier Tsuyoshi Tane Architects / Architect)
- Nao Tamura (Designer)
- Teruhiro Yanagihara (TERUHIRO YANAGIHARA STUDIO. CO LTD. / Designer)
- Satoshi Yoshiizumi (Principal of TAKT PROJECT Inc. / Designer)
- Hidekuni Kuroda (KOKUYO Co., Ltd. President and CEO)


5. Prizes:
- Grand Prix (one from all entries) ¥2,000,000 (about $15,000)
- Merit Award (three from all entries) ¥500,000 (about $3,800) per winner
- YOKOKU Award (up to twenty winners) ¥30,000 (about $230) per winner*
*The YOKOKU Award is a special award commemorating the 20th anniversary of the KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD. It will be awarded to selected student entrants as a way to support their future work.


6. Judging criteria:
- The design includes a proposed solution to some social issue
- The design has components that make people feel positive
- The idea’s uniqueness
- The product design’s feasibility
- The design’s potential to become a product


7. Award announcements:
March 18, 2023 [tentative]




cash prize award: $ 26,400.00 USD

competition is over