RCA and Wallpaper*: Business of Design Conference

Half-day Business of Design conference featuring talks from high profile international speakers and industry leaders, including various RCA alumni and faculty

This half-day forward-facing conference, curated and hosted by the Royal College of Art and Wallpaper* magazine will give unique insider access to the processes behind some of the brightest creative minds working today.

Discussions will focus on key areas of growth identified in the UK industrial strategy,  including AI/VR robotics, design for healthcare, manufacturing and mobility with guest speakers from the V&A, Digital Catapult, Makerversity, British Interactive Media Association, Microsoft, Design Council, Visa EU and Google.

Panels will include:

V&A Future Starts Here

From smart appliances to satellites, artificial intelligence to internet culture:

  • Mariana Pestana, V&A
  • Rory Hyde, V&A
  • Brendan McGetrick 
  • Studio Drift

Digital Catapult Immersive Design AR/VR

  • Rebecca Gregory-Clarke, lead technologist, Immersive Technology
  • Oluwaseyi Sosanya CEO and co-founder of Gravity Sketch, InnovationRCA start-up
  • Kadine James, 3D tech lead, Hobs Studios
  • Matthew Drinkwater, head of Innovation Agency, London College of Fashion


Maker community, distributed manufacturing, incubation:

  • Tom Tobia, designer and co-founder of Makerversity, Europe’s largest industrial co-working space for emerging maker businesses, also home to a pioneering education programme
  • Fiona Dent, CEO of Makerversity
  • Christopher Waggott, director and co-founder of Common Works – a Design and technology studio based in London
  • Alexis Cuddyre, vice president brand and creative at ADAY, a direct to consumer brand on a mission to create clothing of the future that is beautiful, technical and sustainable, allowing us to create space for the things that matter
  • Sam Part, founder and CEO at Candy Mechanics

Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design

Design, Health and Human-Centred Design with Professor Jeremy Myerson from the RCA's Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design – a research centre that undertakes projects with industry that contribute to improving people's lives:

  • Professor Jeremy Myerson, RCA 
  • Haiyan Zhang, Microsoft
  • Pete Trainor, British Interactive Media Association (BIMA)

Design And Robotics/AI/Machine Learning

Dean of the School of Architecture Dr Adrian Lahoud will join a panel on design and robotics, artificial intelligence and machine learning:

  • Matt Jones, Google
  • Dr Adrian Lahoud, RCA


  • Professor Dale Harrow, RCA
  • Paul Priestman, PriestmanGoode
  • Kevin Lee, Visa

After the Creative City

  • Tarsha Finney, RCA
  • Jamie Fobert, Jamie Fobert Architects

Why attend?
  • Access global best practice in Design, Technology, Art and Fashion
  • Real world applications and research-led expertise that foreground key areas of growth identified in the UK industrial strategy including AI/VR robotics, design for healthcare, manufacturing and mobility
  • Opportunity to interact and network with high profile international speakers and senior industry leaders including various RCA alumni and faculty
Who should attend?

This premier event for business and creative leaders will attract:

  • CEO's, Chief Technical Officers, Chief Innovation Officers, Chief Marketing Officers, Chief Digital Officers
  • In-house R&D teams across all sectors
  • Public-sector and third-sector business innovation teams
  • Innovation directors
  • Business Development Directors
  • Sales and marketing teams
  • Policymakers
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Developers
  • Designers
  • Architects
  • Researchers
  • Academics

This half-day forward-facing conference is part of a fast-paced two-day VIP Design Masterclass on 25–26 June. The two-day event will provide a small number of select people with an intimate and experiential programme composed of exclusive VIP talks, studio tours with globally renowned architects and designers, and a Wallpaper-curated evening reception offering remarkable networking opportunities.

Wallpaper* is the world's number one global design publication championing the best in architecture, interiors, fashion, art and contemporary lifestyle. Tony Chambers will be leading talks and discussions at the conference. He joined Wallpaper* as creative director in January 2003, was appointed Editor-in-Chief in March 2007 and in August 2017 Chambers was announced as Brand & Content Director.

The Royal College of Art is recognised as the world’s most prestigious and influential postgraduate art and design school. With an impressive track record in art and design research and innovation, we lead on prestigious research-led collaborations with leading global corporate partners.

Executive Education at the Royal College of Art

The Royal College of Art has years of experience creating custom senior-level courses and programmes for business, government and the public sector. Find out more here.


Peter Christian
Head of Executive Education
+44 (0)20 7590 4545