the world design rankings (WDR) positions the top countries based on the number of participating designers that have received the A’ design award each year. the purpose of the WDR is to highlight key data and insights to economists and journalists with regards to the design industry. ultimately, this aims to contribute to the bigger and global design culture by supporting and showcasing good design. similarly to 2015, the united states topped the list with a total of 396 awards; in second was turkey again with 297 awards; third, and leapfrogging hong kong and italy, was china with 266 awards; hong kong received 242 awards; and italy rounds up the top five with a total of 202 awards. the remaining countries in the top 10 for 2016 are; taiwan who jumped from 15th to sixth, great britain in seventh,  japan in eighth, brazil in ninth, and germany in tenth spot. 


the rankings table outlines the aggregated score of countries from 2010 to 2016. this list has grown in size as five new countries have joined the rankings: montenegro, malta, liechtenstein, azerbaijan, and georgia.

the world design rankings map for 2016
(main image: one main office by mark goulthorpe and raphael crespin
A’ design award winner in architecture, building and structure design category, 2015 – 2016
photo by dECOi architects & anton grassl)



below you will find the world design rankings for 2016:


score points legend:

world design rankings 2016 platinum award counts as six (6)

world design rankings 2016 a golden award counts as five (5)

world design rankings 2016 silver award counts as (4)

world design rankings 2016 bronze award counts as three (3)

world design rankings 2016 A’ award (marked as iron) counts as two (2)



the WDR strives to provide a sample of the state-of-art and design potentials of countries across the globe by highlighting their creative strengths, design weaknesses and available opportunities. marked as the ‘design business insights’ section, it offers a ranking of nations based on their success in diverse design fields and creative categories, leading to the discovery of which countries are the leaders for specific sectors. ‘design strengths’ compiles the most dominant design fields in which a country is highly competitive and successful. for example, one could learn whether italy is better in fashion, furniture or graphic design. the ‘design weaknesses’ table presents design fields that are below average in comparison to other nations. lastly, the ‘design opportunities’ column displays dormant design categories that could be further expanded by countries. with this insight, media members and design enthusiasts alike could discover more about nations, and understand the relevance of diverse design sectors within them. additionally, this data could be used to determine policy changes, as specific design fields could be identified as requiring government subsidies.

dark side recessed lighting fixture by igor lobanov
A’ design award winner in lighting products and lighting projects design category, 2015 – 2016
photo by igor lobanov


green places community clubhouse leisure architecture by keng fu lo
A’ design award winner in architecture, building and structure design category, 2015 – 2016
photo by kuo min lee


DOTDOTDOT.FRAME evolving furniture by leonid davydov
A’ design award winner in furniture, decorative items and homeware design category, 2015 – 2016
photo by leonid davydov


SHANG system multi-functional storage by SCENE SHANG
A’ design award winner in furniture, decorative items and homeware design category, 2015 – 2016
photo by jessica wong


wooden ebike science meets sustainability by matthias broda, aceteam
A’ design award winner in vehicle, mobility and transportation design category, 2015 – 2016
photo by matthias broda, aceteam





design classifications‘ ranks architects, artists and designers within hundreds of different fields — from architecture, fashion and furniture design, graphic design, interior design, packaging, transportation etc. the platform accumulates data and offers responses to questions such as: ‘what is the best advertising design agency in the world?’; ‘which country is home to the best architects?’; ‘who are the best graphic designers in japan?’ etc. this bracket is ideal for press to locate specific designers, artists and architects to feature, as well as standing as a good resource for business who are seeking talent to collaborate with. you can discover ‘design classifications’ and find out more about the category based designer rankings at:




those only interested in discovering the top architects, artists and designers, without any interest in a particular discipline, are able to check the individual and overall rankings of all architects, artists and designers on the ‘designer rankings’ website. the system provides scores and overall standings of designers based on the number of A’ design awards won globally, drawing from more than a hundred creative disciplines that include: architecture, fashion design, graphic design, interior design, production design and service design. the ‘designer rankings’ can be viewed online at:




the A’ design award and competition aims to highlight the excellent qualifications of best designs, design concepts and design oriented products worldwide. the primary aim of the award is to create publicity, PR push and advertisement opportunities for award winners while supporting the global design culture, creating incentives for entrants to come up with superior designs for a better future. learn more or submit your projects at: