Simon Collins is the Founder of WeDesign.org and former Dean of Parsons School of Design. In his “Design (is) The Future” keynote, he explains how to use design to prepare for and succeed in this uncertain future.
Simon emphasizes that “If you’re gonna do anything, do it brilliantly.”
Watch his keynote below to learn more:
Simon Collins is a design thinker, speaker, writer, educator, designer and advisor. Following a career as a fashion designer then creative director for some of the world’s leading brands including Nike, Polo and Zegna, he spent seven years as Dean of the School of Fashion at Parsons where he helped turn the quietly respected design school into a global mega-brand that partnered with luxury groups like Kering and LVMH. High points of his tenure included moving the entire School of Fashion downtown to a newly constructed building, launching the MFA in Fashion Design and Society, and opening the new Parsons Paris.
While at Parsons Collins was named one of the inaugural Global 500 in the Business of Fashion and as one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company Magazine. His Chinese CCTV6 show “Creative Sky,” enjoyed a regular audience of 5 million through its five seasons.
In 2014, he published his book “The School of Fashion”, which detailed the history of 30 notable Parsons alumni, from Donna Karan to Alexander Wang. He also established his live onstage Conversation Series with guests including Victoria Beckham, Francois-Henri Pinault and Giancarlo Giammetti.
In 2015, he stepped down from the role of dean and joined the Parsons Board of Governors. In addition to chairing the Advisory Board for Global trend group WGSN, he established his consultancy, The House of Collins, to advise brands, institutions, fashion weeks and governments around the world. He also joined the Advisory Board of the NYU Stern Luxury MBA.
Collins has written for publications like the Wall Street Journal, Business of Fashion, and At Large magazine, and he frequently comments on design in the media, including the New York Times, NBC, CNN and NPR. Collins speaks at many leading global conferences including the Cannes Lions (France), the United Nations (NYC) and the Global Fashion Summit(Copenhagen).
In 2016 Collins launched the Fashion Culture Design Unconference in New York, the first major global platform for actual creative discussion, ideas and problem-solving. FCD has become a global ecosystem of unconferences, salons, podcasts and parties.
In 2017 Collins launched WeDesign.org, a global design education platform with a mission to give the world’s best design education to anyone anywhere in the world via live-link video classes with highly respected professors. Teaching kids, young adults and seasoned executives it is currently spreading across China and beyond. In 2020 he was appointed Distinguished Visiting Professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
Simon Collins has spent his career creating beautiful solutions. He is passionate about great design and he travels the world speaking about his adventures.
Simon‘s keynotes are:
- Design Thinking – How to think like a designer to improve every aspect of your life/work
- Design (is) The Future – How to use design to prepare for and succeed in this uncertain future
- Creative Leadership – How to bring creativity into your company and your team
- Sustainability – Sustainability is the only smart future we have, here are ideas on how to do the right thing and use it to your advantage