Information Design Conferences have been great occasions to bring people together and celebrate information design success stories.


Starting at Cranfield in 1984, the first five conferences provided a forum for readers of Information Design Journal to gather and develop the ideas discussed in IDJ.

Those events matured into a continuing series of Information Design Conferences, organised every couple of years by the IDA, to attract international participation and widen the debate. 

The IDA has also collaborated with the Information Design Network, with IIID, and the Design Education Association (DEED) to organise InfoDesign events, focused on information design in higher education.

We'll be adding to the archive of past conferences. This is a selection of our recent conferences, held at the University of Greenwich, and some memories of the first event at Cranfield.

IDC 2012, Greenwich
Tickets for IDC 2012 sold out months before the conference! Our third IDC event held at the University of Greenwich in springtime came with the bonus of cannon fire, a giant elephant (sculpture) and a cast of French Revolutionaries, as the Greenwich campus doubled as the Place de la Bastille for filming ‘Les Miserables’. (Sadly, no sightings of Russell Crowe or Helena Bonham-Carter.)

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IDC 2009, Greenwich
The IDA returned to the University of Greenwich for another capacity two-day conference. Paul Stiff from the University of Reading was the keynote speaker. IDC 2009 offered a variety of case studies from information design practitioners and their clients, reports from researchers, and thought-pieces on what information designers and communicators do.

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IDC 2007, Greenwich
The first (of three to date) conferences held in the stately riverside surroundings of the University of Greenwich (the old Naval College), designed by Sir Christopher Wren. The programme attracted good international interest and included speakers from Europe, Asia, and North and South America.

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Cranfield, the first event, 1984
The first gathering of information designers was organised by the founders of Information Design Journal (IDJ). It was held over three days and featured some excellent content and interdisciplinary approaches, as well as a few quirky moments: 

  • Cranfield deciding to mend the roof during the conference
  • a barman only being happy serving from his massive collection of single malt whiskies, disparaging every other choice
  • coffee being served in the foyer, amid notices saying 'Quiet: examination in progress', and everyone being shushed by irate invigilators.