Fireside chat with Sudhir Sharma hosted by Michael Stoddart, Director, Digital Media, Adobe

India is set to emerge as the world’s fastest-growing major economy by 2015, ahead of China, as per the recent report by The World Bank. The report reveals that India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to grow at 7.5 per cent in FY 2015-16.
According to the Minister of State for Finance, the Indian economy will continue to grow at 7 to 9 per cent and double in size to US$ 4–5 trillion in a decade, becoming the third largest economy in absolute terms.

We are also becoming a complex economy in terms of mix of industries, exports, imports, and mergers and acquisitions, However, a major input missing in all these reports is about the design economy of India. It is the design economy that will make the industrial economy sustainable and long lasting. All major economies of the world have started measuring the design economy as an index of the major economy.

In India measuring the design economy is extremely complex, not that any institution is bothering about it anyway. Current economic statistics and design reports do not capture the output and productivity of this modern dynamic economy.

A few reasons (there could be more) why design would present a challenge to statisticians in India:
• Distinction between crafts, handicrafts and design industry hasn’t been spelt out yet.
• Design is not yet an organized industry or even business.
• Design is not a single industry.
• Designers are not always full-time Designers.
• Design is mostly intangible.

It is time we start looking into measuring, sustaining and growing the design economy in India. Now that we have so many design institutions I hope some will come forward to join hands and dive deep into this.

Sudhir Sharma, Editor-in-Chief

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