The Global Positive Design Initiative (GPDI), comprising a network of design schools around the world, helps students develop their capabilities to design for human flourishing and well-being. We do this by giving them access to knowledge, tools, and techniques for Positive Design.


Our mission

We are committed to helping design students to operationalize human well-being in their design practices. We do this through the development and dissemination of Positive Design knowledge and techniques. In addition, we foster the exchange of knowledge and experiences across design schools.

Our activities

We have four primary activities:

  • Providing an online platform to make Positive Design knowledge, educational material, design tools, and best practices visible and accessible for design students. Tools are downloadable from the Positive Design Repository on our website.

  • Promoting collaborations by creating a network of partners, involving academia, the design industry, and industry at large that develops positive (product, technology, and service) design.

  • Developing courses and other educational material to teach design students to design for well-being. We also translate material to reduce language-generated challenges.

  • Improving learning conditions in design schools to help students and teachers to flourish.

Our organization

The GPDI is a platform initiative of international design schools. On September 24, 2019, delegates of eight design schools launched the initiative by signing a GPDI manifesto during the opening session of the International Conference on Design for Experience and Wellbeing (hosted by NPU and Delft University) in Xi’an, China.

The GPDI has an Academic Board, consisting of members from all affiliated design schools. They are the main points of contact at their schools and help in collecting and distributing Positive Design knowledge.


The GPDI exists through the efforts of its academic members who contribute their time and research output. Website development was supported by VICI grant number 453-16-009 of The Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO), Division for the Social and Behavioural Sciences, awarded to P.M.A. Desmet.