Entry Process, Terms & Conditions

Entries will only be accepted online at http://www.idsa.org/DOD. If you are selected as a winner you agree to submit either a product/prototype/model of your design for the permanent collection at The Henry Ford. Each Selected Entrant will be asked to transport, at their cost and risk, a product/prototype/model for the permanent collection at The Henry Ford, and may also be sent an affidavit of eligibility / liability / publicity release (“Release”).

Before you log in to upload your entry, be sure to review categories and choose the most appropriate for your entry. Have all of your information ready to submit, including:

A complete and accurate list of designer credits and clients/manufacturers. All credits will be FINAL as listed in your entry form, so please take care to list credits exactly as you wish to see them in print.

  • Answers to entry form questions as you see fitting to your category and that helps to support your case for Design of the Decade.


  • One glamour shot – a crisp, clear professional photograph that shows your product’s best side and fills the frame. It should be horizontally-oriented, have a contrasting background (white is best), and be attention-grabbing, visually compelling or “sexy.” File should be web-standard .JPG or .GIF, 96 dpi, in RGB colorspace, 960 x 720 px and no larger than 1MB;nbsp;and
  • One .PDF file (6 pg. / 8MB max) to explain the challenge and solution (preferred file type) OR
  • up to six images (web-standard .JPG or .GIF, 96 dpi, RGB colorspace, 960 x 720 px, 1MB max each) to demonstrate the design challenge and solution. PDFs/images can include captions, storyboards, etc.
  • Video (optional): Max. 60 seconds and 10 MB; .MOV, .WMV, .AVI, .SWF, and .MPEG/.MPG only

The judging is blind: the designers, their names and the names of consulting firms may not appear anywhere in the entry form or image/file uploads. Failure to abide by this rule results in immediate disqualification. It’s acceptable for brand names or logos of manufacturing companies/clients to appear if they are inherent to the product.

IDSA has the right to publicly share all information on the application unless specially requested otherwise. You can make this determination prior to submitting the application form.

Judging takes places in two stages. Jurors do their initial scoring online in small teams. In this first stage of judging, the jury will evaluate all entries for eligibility, completeness, thoroughness, appropriateness and general conformance to award criteria. Specific criteria may be weighted differently in different categories, at the judges’ discretion.

In the second, final judging stage, the jury as a whole will meet to review the entry materials. Jurors will decide which Finalists exemplify the key criteria of the Design of the Decade. The entire jury will vote to make final award determinations. The jury’s decisions are final.

The Design of the Decade Award may be given to the one Gold-winning entry deemed best in show by the jurors. This award will be determined at the conclusion of the regular jurying by clear majority vote.

People’s Choice Award: Voting for this award will be conducted online after the winners are announced, and the voting is open to the public. Each person may only vote once. Voting will also be open during the conference. Only the Gold winners will be eligible to win the People’s Choice Award.

All decisions of the Jury and Sponsors are final. IDSA makes no guarantees as to the number and type of Design of the Decade awards given. All data contained in the submission become the property of IDSA and part of its archives.  Supplementary judging material and product samples submitted by Finalists will be held by The Henry Ford’s permanent collection. By submitting an entry, you agree that IDSA and any other party authorized by it shall have permission to publish any material contained in the submission.  Award entry material is on the public record and no content will be treated confidentially.

On or about September 1, 2010 the Jury will select Finalists (“Selected Entrants”) to enter the final round of judging. Each Selected Entrant will be asked to transport, at their cost and risk, additional supplementary material for judging, and may also be sent an affidavit of eligibility / liability / publicity release (“Release”).  Entrant agrees to grant IDSA, its sponsor(s), third-party vendors and agents the unrestricted rights to publish, display and use the submitted design, entrant’s name, voice, photograph, logo, or other mark or likeness, as well as same of the designer(s), for advertising and promoting the competition and other related purposes in any media without additional permission or compensation (optional for TN residents.)  Selected Entrants may also be required to provide other relevant information. Unless restricted by law, each selected entrant will be required to complete and return the Release along with their entry form in order to have a valid entry.

Competition is subject to these Official Rules.
By participating, entrants agree to be bound by these complete Official Rules, and, whether or not a member, the terms of ethics on the IDSA web site. All decisions of Sponsor are final and binding; and entrants agree to waive any right to claim ambiguity in the Competition or these Official Rules, except where prohibited by law.  By accepting an award, winner agrees to release Sponsor, its attorneys, affiliates, together with the respective directors, employees, officers, licensees, licensors and agents of each, including without limitation, their respective advertising and promotion entities and any person or entity associated with the production, judging, or administration of the Contest, (collectively, the Releasees) from any and all liability, loss or damage arising from or in connection with awarding, receipt and/or use or misuse of award or participation in any award-related activities.  Sponsor reserves the right to use the Contest for publicity purposes in any media, and to use the name, likeness, entry materials and hometown name and/or award information of Selected Entrants as part of that publicity, without any compensation or prior review unless prohibited by law. Sponsor may cancel the contest for any reason, at its sole discretion.  This Contest is void everywhere such contests are prohibited or restricted by law, and subject to applicable federal, state provincial and local laws.  Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify any entrant it finds to be tampering with the entry process or the operation of the Contest or violating these Official Rules. The Releasees shall not be liable for: (i) late, lost, delayed, misdirected, incomplete unreadable, inaccurate, garbled or unintelligible entries, or communications; (ii) broadband, cable, telephone system, telephone or computer hardware, software or other technical or computer malfunctions, lost connections, disconnections, delays or transmission errors; (iii) data corruption, theft, destruction, unauthorized access to or alteration of entry or other materials; (iv) any injuries, losses or damages of any kind caused by acceptance of the award or resulting from acceptance, possession or use of a award, or from participation in the Contest; or (v) any printing, typographical, administrative or technological errors in any materials associated with the Contest.  Sponsors disclaim any liability for damage to any computer system resulting from participating in, or accessing or downloading information in connection with this Contest, and reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to cancel, modify or suspend the Contest should a virus, bug, computer problem, unauthorized intervention or other causes beyond Sponsors’ control, corrupt the administration, security or proper play of the Contest.  Sponsors may prohibit an entrant from participating in the Contest or winning award if, in its sole discretion, it determines such entrant is attempting to undermine the legitimate operation of the Contest in any way by cheating, hacking, deception, or any other unfair playing practices of intending to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other players or Sponsors’ representatives. Disputes regarding these Official Rules and/or this Contest will be governed by the internal laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia.  Any and all legal actions or claims arising in connection with this Contest must be brought in a court of competent jurisdiction within Virginia, and you agree to jurisdiction and venue in the courts of Virginia.  Entrant acknowledges and agrees that IDSA reserves the right to amend, modify or terminate the competition at any time.  CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT TO DELIBERATELY DAMAGE IDSA or any of the sponsors AND/OR CONTEST-RELATED WEB SITES OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THE CONTEST MAY BE IN VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS AND WILL RESULT IN DISQUALIFICATION FROM PARTICIPATION IN THE CONTEST.  SHOULD SUCH AN ATTEMPT BE MADE, SPONSORS RESERVE THE RIGHT TO SEEK REMEDIES AND DAMAGES (INCLUDING ATTORNEY FEES) TO THE FULLEST EXTENT OF THE LAW, INCLUDING CRIMINAL PROSECUTION.


The Sponsors shall not be involved in any dispute and shall be held harmless and free of any liability in any dispute regarding intellectual property rights. By entering this Competition, Entrant warrants that Entry does not infringe on the Intellectual Property rights of others.

PRIVACY.  All personal information collected by Sponsor will be used for administration of the Contest. In addition entrants specifically opt in to receive email correspondence from, or on behalf of IDSA, subject to IDSA’s privacy policy. IDSA complies with Federal CAN-SPAM guidelines and entrants may subsequently opt-out of receiving further emails. Any questions regarding privacy matters should be directed to the address set out below. Please refer to Sponsors’ privacy policy located at www.idsa.org for important information regarding the collection, use and disclosure of personal information by Sponsor.

For a copy of these Official Rules, send your request in a self-addressed, stamped envelope (WA, VT and Canadian residents need not affix return postage) to:  Design of the Decade Official Rules, 45195 Business Court, Suite 250, Dulles, VA 20166-6717. Or send an email request to designsdecade@idsa.org. Winners will be posted on IDSA’s web site. IDSA and Design of the Decade are copyright of the Industrial Designers Society of America. 

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People's Choice Award

This copy seems adapted from the IDEA competition, but does it apply to DOD exactly as stated?

People’s Choice Award: Voting for this award will be conducted online after the winners are announced, and the voting is open to the public. Each person may only vote once. Voting will also be open during the conference. Only the Gold winners will be eligible to win the People’s Choice Award.

reply to People's Choice

Hello Bill,

The People's Choice award is not inherenent solely to IDEA.  It is possible that we could also have a People's Choice for Design of the Decade.