Design Awards Give Back


In its 14 years, the Shaw Contract Design Awards Program has given nearly $150,000 to non-profit and charitable organizations around the world. Each year, the final winners and People’s Choice Award winner select a charity of their choice to donate $2000 USD as part of their prize winnings. This allows designers the opportunity to make an impact beyond the built environment. 

“One of the things we consistently try to do is give back to the design environment around us,” said ACDF Architecture designer Veronica Lalli. ACDF chose Quebec-based charity Maison de l’Architecture du Quebec to support their design community in Montreal.

Fokkema & Partners Architecten Bv, the Netherlands-based firm whose work drew the judges' attention for a win in the Small Office category, chose a cause that was near and dear to their firm. A former colleague oversees the construction of schools in Tanzania, and the firm chose to support her work with their winnings.

RossTarrant Architects, the People’s Choice Award winner, designed Western Kentucky University and chose to give back to the institution’s science and experimentation programs.

“The donation went to supporting students to help them purchase lab equipment,” said Principal Sarah Lamere of RossTarrant Architects. “We just thought that was a really nice way to say we want to continue to support the university and the college’s mission in this building.”

How will your work make an impact? Which causes are important to you? 

Design Awards

Our Design Awards recognize the creative vision of the architects and designers who inspire new ways of living, working, learning and healing.