Welcome to the Sign Design Society

The Sign Design Society (SDS) is for anyone interested in information and graphic communication within buildings and public spaces, including:

As well as raising the profile of our disciplines, we offer members a programme of events, resources and initiatives to help them:

To join choose a membership plan that suits you and sign up!

Our events

York-for-slides

This talk, by Alastair Somerville of Acuity Design, uses examples from projects for Imperial War Museum, English Heritage, National Trust, and Transport for Manchester to show how a sequence of wayfinding materials that pay attention to the active interaction of an individual’s capacities in relation to the organisation’s capabilities can help people to find their […]

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News

Third party events

In an era of polarised opinions on net zero policies and how best to tackle climate change in our towns and cities, bringing people and organisations together to agree on the best pathway(s) to the future is essential. Co-produced city visions represent shared, and often desirable, expectations about our urban futures. In their book, ‘Urban Futures: Planning for City Foresight and City Visions’, Timothy Dixon and Mark Tewdwr-Jones explore the history and evolution of city visions, placing them in the wider context of art, culture, science, foresight, and urban theory. The book highlights and critically reviews examples of city visions from around the world, contrasting their development and outlining the key benefits and challenges in planning such visions.
The authors show how important it is to think about the future of cities in objective and strategic ways, engaging with a range of stakeholders – something more important than ever as we look to visions of a sustainable future that takes us beyond the COVID-19 crisis, and net zero culture wars. Join the discussion of Urban Futures and the directions we may see our cities move towards as they focus on the theoretical underpinnings of the book and practical examples such as the Newcastle 2065 and Reading 2050 programmes.

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Type Paris Now 2024

Date: 1 June 2024

This conference (in English) brings together graphic design and typography enthusiasts. We seek to explain how typography has a visible impact on the world around us. Come to Paris to listen a mix of inspiring speakers evoking topics as broad as graphic design, web design, motion design, publishing, visual identity, communication and type design.

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The Nature of Cities Festival

Start date: 3 June 2024
End date: 7 June 2024

TNOC-Festival-Berlin

TNOC Festival is part conference, part radical imagination, part retreat. Take part in a global community of urban thinkers and changemakers to build cities that are better for nature and all people by mixing art, science, and urban practice.

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4th International Placemaking Week

Start date: 5 June 2024
End date: 8 June 2024

Project for Public Spaces’ International Placemaking Week seeks to bring together practitioners, policymakers, and public space advocates from around the world to share the projects and innovations that are making placemaking one of the most critical movements of the 21st century. We want to hear about your experience, stories, tools, and lessons to understand how placemaking can help address local and global challenges!

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BuiltEnvironment

Join us for the inaugural lectures of UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering (IEDE) Professor Anna Mavrogianni and Professor Nici Zimmermann. Anna Mavrogianni is Professor of Sustainable, Healthy and Equitable Built Environment at UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering. There she leads the Research Theme on Temperature, Moisture and Air Quality. With a background […]

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ReadingUni_Emergence_2024-1

‘Emergence’ describes our transition from the explorations of study to the opportunities of professional life. It also invokes AI technologies driving change in graphic communication. What will emerge isn’t yet clear, but we’re ready to help shape the future of our field.

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Minimal cognition: brained or brainless biological intelligence

Start date: 9 June 2024
End date: 13 June 2024

The purpose of the Workshop is to look at model organisms as diverse as possible with the aim of unveiling a more comprehensive meaning of the concept of «cognition». Our motivation for this workshop stems from the need to examine cognitive evidence devoid of anthropocentric biases. We aim to focus on compelling evidence of intelligent behaviour in various organisms, ranging from insects to single-cell organisms, and extending to the potential for plant intelligence and cognition. Convincing evidence of intelligent behaviour is attested in a variety of organisms, from the pin-brained organisms provided by invertebrates such as insects to single celled organisms such as ciliate or protists up to the possibility of plant intelligence and cognition. Another focal point of the workshop is the role of synaptic plasticity in learning and memory, which is currently a prominent topic in neuroscience. We will revisit past studies on Pavlovian conditioning in organisms like Paramecium aurelia and planarians, reevaluating the association between nuclear mechanisms and long-term memory storage, which has implications for cognition in single-cell organisms. Studies of minimal cognition in brain and brainless organisms should be complemented by the study of the plasticity of dynamic morphogenesis of biological forms as revealed by regenerative biology and controlled chimerism. The development of synthetic living machines with behavioural capacity, offers new avenues for understanding the origins of cognition in all of possible forms of material implementations.

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ReadingUni_Emergence_2024-1

‘Emergence’ describes our transition from the explorations of study to the opportunities of professional life. It also invokes AI technologies driving change in graphic communication. What will emerge isn’t yet clear, but we’re ready to help shape the future of our field.

Read more

Can a single typeface express diverse viewpoints through its own functionality? Partners from two design studios, Polymode and XYZ Type, discuss their collaboration to bring notions of expansive personal identity into typographic form. The unexpected road to their typeface Polymode Sans began by viewing a historical type revival through a queer lens, and led them to harness variable font technology as a form of cultural code-switching. Working on an abstract theoretical foundation, they created an entirely pragmatic tool: a typeface with both the versatile utility of a sans serif and the vigor of a decorative display face. This talk will follow their process through from initial idea to chameleonic applications, posing questions about collaboration, dialogue with history, and how designers express personal identity.

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This event will explore how we can create a built environment where everyone, regardless of their economic circumstances, gender, ethnicity, age, sexual identity, physical ability, nationality or religion, can participate fully in all available social, economic, cultural , political opportunities. Engage with experts in the field and gain valuable insights with like-minded individuals and be part of a conversation that is shaping the future design.

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