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Press Release

President*s Design Award recipients DP Architects, Hans Tan and WOHA among latest awardees for Good Design Research Grant

6 min read

The fourth Good Design Research Grant Call has attracted a mix of established
and emerging designers to experiment and design for impact

Hans Tan of Hans Tan Studio, Wong Mun Summ and Richard Hassell of WOHA 
Photos by: Khoogj and Mark Teo 

26 April 2022 – DesignSingapore Council’s flagship initiative Good Design Research has grown in stature, with three President*s Design Award (P*DA) recipients among the latest batch being awarded the industry’s premier research grant. 

DP Architects (four-time P*DA Design of the Year recipient), Hans Tan (P*DA Designer of the Year 2018 and two-time Design of the Year recipient) and WOHA (Designer of the Year 2008 and 11-time Design of the Year  recipient) are embarking on extensive design research for their projects centering on health and well-being, hawker culture, safety and accessibility respectively. 

“The Good Design Research initiative supports quality design research-led projects across different domains, that might otherwise fall through the gaps of typical research grants. It gives designers the courage to take risks. While hawker culture is a significant part of Singapore’s intangible culture and heritage, and the stars are deservedly the hawkers and their dishes, it is perhaps important that we look more closely at the physical setting such as hawker wares that also contribute to this culture. Design research here plays a key role of helping us reveal and understand that which may be obvious, but not readily apparent,” says Hans Tan, founder of Hans Tan studio and associate professor at the Division of Industrial Design, National University of Singapore.

Besides Saving Hawker Colours, four other projects were selected for the fourth Good Design Research Grant Call. They are Stair Well: Designing Active Stairs to Support Well-Being by DP Architects; Grab Your Life by WOHA; What Works? – Perspectives from Community Workers by lecturer, social worker and design practitioner Woo Pei Yi and Rethinking the Future of Retail by architect Foong Siew-Tong.

“For DP Architects, weaving in well-being research is a core part of the company’s DNA. Unfortunately, there is limited experimental research available to understand how modifying the aesthetics and environment of a staircase might encourage its usage and improve stair-users outlook. Through Good Design Research, we hope to innovate highly specific interventions to better understand what and how we can design for well-being,” says Kailas Moorthy, Associate Director (UK), DP Architects. 

The unveiling of these projects coincides with the launch of the fifth Good Design Research Grant Call on 25 April 2022. Designers and enterprises keen to submit an application can look forward to tackling real world issues from new Challenge Statement Partners: Urban Redevelopment Authority-Housing Development Board’s Lively Places Fund which seeks projects to enliven public spaces; Singapore Civil Defence Force which hopes to strengthen its mission to nurture a nation of life-savers; and eco-solutions firm, Terra Sol, which is looking for solutions to address glass waste effectively in Singapore. 

“As the Good Design Research eco-system continues to grow, we are heartened to see  
established and emerging designers and design firms, as well as new Challenge Statement Partners, embracing the value of design research and the exponential role it plays in creating solutions for impact. We hope to build upon this momentum, attract more stakeholders and further the positive impact generated,” says Mark Wee, Executive Director of DesignSingapore Council.     

Please see Annex for the projects from the fourth Good Design Research Grant Call.

Photos of the designers and their projects can be downloaded here

About the DesignSingapore Council (Dsg)

DesignSingapore Council’s (Dsg) vision is for Singapore to be an innovation-driven economy and a loveable city through design by 2025. As the national agency that promotes design, our mission is to develop the design sector, help Singapore use design for innovation and growth, and make life better in this UNESCO Creative City of Design. The Dsg is a subsidiary of the Singapore Economic Development Board.

For more information, please visit

About the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB)

The Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), a government agency under the Ministry of Trade and Industry, is responsible for strategies that enhance Singapore’s position as a global centre for business, innovation, and talent. We undertake investment 
promotion and industry development, and work with international businesses, both foreign and local, by providing information, connection to partners and access to government incentives for their investments. Our mission is to create sustainable economic growth, with vibrant business and good job opportunities for Singapore and Singaporeans. 

For more information on EDB, please visit

Media contact

Serene Lim

DesignSingapore Council
Assistant Director

D +65 6962 2063
Sara Chong

DesignSingapore Council

D +65 6962 2095
Lim Yi Xin

Edelman Singapore

D +65 9858 2642

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Singapore’s highest honour for designers and designs across all disciplines
One of Asia’s premier design festivals that champions design thought leadership
National Design Centre