German Design Council

About us

As Germany's leading authority on design and brands, the German Design Council works to promote society’s awareness of design and supports companies on all matters relating to brand and design development. We provide a forum for interdisciplinary knowledge transfer and give our members a competitive edge: independently, internationally and competently.

Created by the German Parliament, sponsored by German industry: for many years, the German Design Council has been working to promote design as an economic factor and make Germany one of the world’s most successful design nations.

The German Design Council has been operating since 1953 as one of the world’s leading centres of expertise in communication and knowledge transfer within design, branding and innovation. It is part of the worldwide design community and has always contributed to the establishment of global exchange and networking thanks to its international offering, promotion of new talent and memberships.


»Since its establishment, the German Design Council has been committed to global networking with countless international undertakings. Our subsidiary in China and partnerships with representatives in other countries are core elements of our vision of making knowledge accessible internationally and developing strong networks. There can only be benefits for all the forces involved in the design process when there is international exchange. As a founding member of the World Design Organization, we have upheld this belief for decades and will continue to do so as part of our foundation’s mission.«
Lutz Dietzold, CEO German Design Council

The German Design Council’s activities, including networking events, conventions, awards, jury meetings and expert committees, connect its members and numerous other international design and branding experts, foster discourse and provide important stimulation for the global economy.

Structure & Tasks

The German Design Council’s wide-ranging work includes promoting young talent, a comprehensive range of consulting services for companies on design strategy, brand management and innovation development and extensive knowledge transfer with seminars, presentations and a large library.

  • Promoting design/promoting young talent
    • The future belongs to up-and-coming designers. They ensure that Germany remains one of the most successful design nations. The German Design Council supports them with a range of projects and initiatives: as one of the world’s leading centres of excellence for communication and knowledge transfer, it offers newcomers an influential platform on which to present themselves, opens up access to crucial networks and, with young talent competitions, boosts public awareness of their work. With the Deutsches Design Museum Foundation, the German Design Council has created a separate organisation offering initiatives to get young people interested in design, such as the nationwide “Discover Design” school programme. The non-profit foundation works to promote all aspects of design as a crucial element of education and culture, science and business. Its digital picture archive makes a valuable contribution to knowledge of German design history: over 42,000 image records that are currently being collated and digitised document product design in the 20th century – and will made be publicly available in

  • Brand and design consulting
    • Design makes brands successful. That’s why the German Design Council helps companies to successfully implement brand and design strategies – with its extensive range of services ensuring that design can help give them that competitive edge. This includes consulting and assistance on strategies, concept development, communication and internationalisation, providing basic knowledge for putting them into practice with design partners and networking with suitable experts. With trend and thematic studies, brand and design audits and concepts for the effective communication of design expertise, the German Design Council is the experienced, impartial authority that supports companies on all issues relating to brand and design.
  • Knowledge Transfer
    • Imparting and sharing knowledge are among the key tasks of the German Design Council. With top-class seminars and workshops, our studies, the activities of our Deutsches Design Museum Foundation and an extensive library, we provide a unique platform for design and brand expertise in Germany and help to give our members a competitive edge. We raise awareness of the importance of design – and proactively help to shape the future of German design.Die Bereitstellung und der Austausch von Wissen gehören zu den Kernaufgaben des Rat für Formgebung. In addition, the Institute for Design Research and Appliance (IfDRA) at the German Design Council, sees itself as an interface, mediator and advisor for the various exponents from theory and application-oriented practice.


A unique global network. Over 330 well-known companies in a range of sectors are already enjoying the benefits of foundation membership. They are all united in their belief that strong brands need strong design – a synergy that produces lasting benefits and opens up new markets.

Your company is a leader in brand management and design and you want to expand on this success? Become a German Design Council foundation member and benefit from the alliance of the best.

more about the membership
to the foundation members

Presiding committee 2021

The founder's meeting elects the presiding committee of the German Design Council from among its members; it includes 12 individuals.

  • Prof. Mike Richter (Präsident)
    • Prof. Mike Richter is a professor at Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences for the Design Department and a serial entrepreneur. He is co-founder of three companies. The icon group - an international innovation catalyst and experience creator. Banbutsu - a company specialising in the Internet of Things (IOT), and Veritas Entertainment - an eSports investor. Mike Richter has a degree in Industrial Design and a Master's degree in Design Planning.
  • Nicole Srock.Stanley (Vize-Präsidentin)
    • Nicole Srock.Stanley is the founder of the dan pearlman Group, a group of owner-managed, strategic creative agencies founded in 1999. Within the agency group, she is CEO of dan pearlman Markenarchitektur GmbH and has overall responsibility for brand and corporate strategy. In addition to her work at dan pearlman, Nicole Srock.Stanley is the founder of numerous innovative companies such as Climate Education GmbH. She is also involved in the Business Council of the German Environmental Foundation, sits on the advisory board of the Stiftung Zukunft Berlin and is a Senior Fellow of the Institute of Place Management at the University of Manchester.
  • Dr. Saskia Diehl
    • Dr. Saskia Diehl studied psychology and economics and, parallel to her work as a management consultant, completed her doctorate at the Institute for Brand and Communication Research under Prof. Franz-Rudolf Esch. In her dissertation "Brand Attachment. Determinants of Successful Brand Relationships" she examined the emotional attachment between brands and consumers. Her publications include various papers on emotional brand management. Dr. Saskia Diehl is managing partner of GMK Markenberatung and also lectures on consumer behaviour & neuromarketing at the EUFH Cologne.
  • Roland Heiler
    • Roland Heiler, former CEO of Studio F. A. Porsche, trained as a technical draughtsman at Porsche and studied automotive design at the Royal College of Art in London. In 2000, he became head designer at the Porsche Styling Studio in Huntington Beach, California, and took over there in 2002.
  • Dr. Annemarie Jaeggi
    • Dr. Annemarie Jaeggi is regarded in international professional circles as one of the most renowned architecture and art historians for the 20th century, in particular due to her expertise for the era of the Weimar Republic with a focus on Walter Gropius as well as in the field of monument conservation and exhibitions. Since 2003, she has been director at the Bauhaus Archive / Museum of Design in Berlin. 
  • Dr. Petra Kiedaisch
    • Dr Petra Kiedaisch is a publisher, curator and editor in Stuttgart. Born in 1967, Petra Kiedaisch studied German language and literature, business administration and literary mediation in Heidelberg, Bamberg and Washington D.C. From 1996 to 2011, she was managing director of avedition GmbH. Here she developed and produced, among other things, the international yearbooks on trade fair, event and exhibition design, published the yearbook of the Art Directors Club as well as numerous monographs on internationally successful design offices. She then moved to the non-fiction publisher h.f. ullmann in Potsdam, where she was publishing director. Currently she is managing partner of av edition GmbH and board member for communication of aed e.V. Publications by Reclam, Niemeyer, Fink, Königshausen & Neumann, avedition, e.g.: CI & CD 4.0. The Compendium (2018), Scenography. Das Kompendium (2020).
  • Leo Lübke
    • Leo Lübke, born in 1963, studied industrial design with a focus on furniture design at the Muthesius University of Design in Kiel following his training as a bank clerk. Since 1995, he has been managing partner of COR Sitzmöbel Helmut Lübke GmbH & Co. KG, of which he took over sole management in 2007. From 1997 to 2012, he was also managing partner of interlübke Gebr. Lübke GmbH & Co. KG in Rheda-Wiedenbrück.
  • Philipp Mainzer
    • Philipp Mainzer studied product design at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London and architecture at the Architectural Association. In 1995, Philipp Mainzer co-founded the furniture brand e15. Parallel to founding e15, Philipp Mainzer practised architecture in New York and continued to do so after returning to Germany in 2001. Today, Philipp Mainzer is creative director and managing partner of his architectural office PHILIPP MAINZER OFFICE FOR ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN and of e15.
  • Katrin Menne
    • Katrin Menne studied graphic design as well as design theory and management at the Academy of Visual Arts Leipzig, the Rietveld Academy Amsterdam and Pforzheim University. She then worked as a consultant for agencies and consultancies and looked after various clients ranging from medium-sized companies to blue chip corporations. As Head of Branding, she was until recently responsible for brand strategy, brand management and brand and innovation communication at the science and technology company Merck. Since 1 October 2021, she has been in charge of the newly created Brand and Research division at Commerzbank AG.
  • Caroline Seifert
    • Caroline Seifert is an expert in the field of platform economies and digitalisation. She has played a formative role in the development of technical innovations in the telecommunications sector and can look back on a long international career in globally operating tech companies with a focus on design, development and customer experience. After professional positions at Deutsche Telekom as Senior Vice President Design & Customer Experience and the Indian telecommunications group Reliance Jio as Chief Brand & Design Officer, she is currently a transformation consultant on the Supervisory Board of Commerzbank.
  • Prof. Dr. h.c. Gorden Wagener
    • Prof. Dr. h.c. Gorden Wagener, born in 1968, is Chief Design Officer of Daimler AG and responsible for the design of Mercedes-Benz Cars, Mercedes-Benz Vans and Daimler Trucks. After studying Industrial Design at the University of Essen, he specialised in Transportation Design at the Royal College of Art in London. Before joining the then Daimler-Benz AG in 1997, he worked as an exterior designer for Volkswagen, Mazda and GM. In 2009, he received the title of Professor honoris causa from the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design in Budapest. In 2010, he was awarded the title of Doctor honoris causa by the Technical University of Sofia. Gorden Wagener has headed the globally active design division of Daimler AG since mid-2008.
  • Kristina Walcker-Mayer
    • Kristina Walcker-Mayer, former CEO of Nuri (formerly Bitwala), one of the first German crypto banks. She joined the fintech in 2020, initially as Product Officer before taking over as CEO from founder Ben Jones. Together with him, she defined the future direction of the product and made a significant contribution to the closing of the last funding round. At NURI, she has already reorganised the product and design team, is responsible for the fintech company's product development and will drive the company's strategy. Prior to NURI, she served as CPO at N26 as Head of Product and led numerous product teams at Zalando.

Lutz Dietzold

Lutz Dietzold (*1966) has been CEO of the German Design Council since 2002. Prior to that, he worked as a design communication freelancer and was managing director of Designzentrum Hessen (Hesse Design Centre), where he was responsible for the strategic reorientation of design promotion.

Grounded on his studies of art history, classical archaeology and German language and literature in Frankfurt Lutz Dietzold has gathered extensive experience of design, branding and innovation. He also has a special interest in promoting design and up-and-coming designers. In 2011, he became a member of the advisory council of the Mia Seeger Stiftung (Mia Seeger Foundation) and a member of the Stiftung Deutsches Design Museum (German Design Museum Foundation), subsequently taking on the role of chairman in 2020. He was appointed to the Dieselkuratorium's Board of Trustees in the same year and is dedicated to strengthening the pioneering role of commercially successful innovators. 

Lutz Dietzold is also working to increase the international orientation of the German Design Council and its global network of leading companies from industry and the business world. This includes setting up a subsidiary in China.

Lutz Dietzold publishes articles on a regular basis and gives national and international lectures on a variety of topics. He is also a member of numerous committees and juries and sits on the project advisory board of the German Federal Ecodesign Award of the Bundesumweltministerium (German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety).