Design for Sustainable Development (DFSD) is a non-profit venture conceptualised by the Academy of Design (AOD), that forms part of the academy’s dedicated social mission. The project recognises and realises the role of the island’s dynamic traditional handicrafts, in the socio-economic development of Sri Lanka.Working with communities across the island, the project links the skills of practising artisans with the growing tourist and boutique hotel markets through a process of fresh and innovative co-design and the creation of contemporary craft products. At the heart of DFSD is the principle of co-design. The DFSD team work alongside the regional artisans to develop products that build on Sri Lanka’s rich heritage, rather than imposing subjective style solutions at odds with the local context.These one of a kind, handcrafted products offer endless design possibilities especially for the hospitality industry. From homeware woven in Palmyra of North, to Divulapitiya handloom textiles, garments, upholstery and bed linen, or brassware of Pilimathalawa, Dumbara upholstery, coir flooring and carpets, batik textiles and exclusive crockery handmade by artisans specialising in ceramic and pottery in the South – are to name a few.

The DFSD provides creative solutions and inspiration that will create a new dimension in local craft industry; which we believe is fundamental in supporting Sri Lanka’s economic development in the 21st Century.