Jul 06, 2018

Milan and Shenzhen

Milan and Shenzhen: the deal that will change the world of design  

It’s a one of a kind deal the one that was signed on the 13th of June at the Triennale di Milano. A pact that reinforces the partnership between the Metropolitan City of Milan and Shenzhen, modern metropolis located in South-Western China that connects Hong Kong to the rest of the country. The goal? To work on shared projects concerning the design, research and education fields.

In the presence of Stefano Boeri, President of Fondazione La Triennale, Cristina Tajani, council member for Work, Production, Trading, and Human Resource departments for the city of Milan, Song Xuefeng (Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Milan), and Wang Weizhong (Shenzhen’s mayor), the collaboration between the two cities was sealed, filling a gap that is now only on the maps.

As Milan is considered the global hub of design (just think about the worldwide appeal an event like the Salone del Mobile draws), Shenzhen walks right beside it: in the Chinese metropolis there are over 12000 firms that work in the design field, 56 cultural and creative parks (they receive funds and nurture talents from all over the world), and 16 designers and entrepreneurs’ associations endorsed by the Government, which every year allocates the equivalent of 67 million euros to support the sector. A field, the design and creativity one, that keeps growing exponentially and that now represent 10% of the national GDP.

Shenzhen, that has even its own Design Week (attended by more than a thousand designers coming from 25 different countries, 2500 showcased projects, and 65 events organized in 2018) and hosts a Design Award for young talents, has rightly earned the title of “City of Design”. A recognition that brought it closer to Milan, which has been its model for years. That’s exactly Shenzhen’s goal, one of the most innovative metropolis of the world, as well as the Chinese city in which most patents are filed: to become an authority in the design world. And in order to reach this goal, it needs Milan, its support and its energy.

After all, a small “miracle” was already accomplished: a miracle by the Chinese economy, made of vitality, creativity, technology, innovation, export, a modern finance, and top-quality services. It is known as the constantly growing and the hi-tech city, Shenzhen, whose inhabitants have in average 33 years of age and which has shown the great ability to attract foreign investors. The city is also known for its own brand, “Shenzhen Design”, that is recognized everywhere: from here, the will to create a transparent market that will help to protect the intellectual property and that will be competitive on an international scale.

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