Founded in 2013, the What Design Can Do blog is a platform for inspiring ideas and fresh conversations about the power of design. We currently publish 1-2 stories a week, with the aim of engaging creative communities with issues like climate action, social justice and health & wellbeing.


CALL FOR STORIES ON COMMUNITY & CLIMATE ACTION

With COP27 fast-approaching, we’ve been thinking a lot about what creatives can do to show up for each other, as well as for the planet. Part of this means making space for important conversations about the role of community in climate action.

That is why we are currently looking for original articles, features and essays that touch on this theme in a personal or critical way. This time we are also accepting submissions that are more visual in nature, for example in the form of an illustrated series or a photo essay. 

Here are a few story prompts to get you started:

  • What does community mean to you as a creative?
  • Why is care and collectivity important to the climate movement?
  • What can nature teach us about collaboration?
  • What are some examples of climate initiatives that put communities first?

Please send your entries to submissions@whatdesigncando.com with the subject line ‘ON COMMUNITY & CLIMATE ACTION’ by 30 September 2022. Selected contributors will receive €250,- for their submission.

Are you interested in writing for What Design Can Do? See our detailed guidelines below.


We accept written submissions to the blog on a rolling basis, and can offer compensation for your work. Please read the following guidelines before submitting your article for review, and make sure to check out our terms and conditions.

What ARE WE LOOKING FOR?  

  • In general, we like to feature news, people and projects that are activistic and design-driven. As champions of creativity, we want to highlight what it can do, instead of what it cannot do.
  • We accept written content in various forms, including recurring series as well as standalone essays, opinion pieces, articles, creative profiles and interviews. In terms of length, our stories are usually 800–1,000 words each.
  • We do not typically publish creative writing in the form of prose or poetry.
  • We do not accept promotional or commercial content directed towards sales or donations.
  • If your submission is based on an academic text, please consider adapting the tone and language to a more editorial style. Think more along the lines of a design column, rather than a research paper.
  • Our readers are creative and forward-thinking. They are interested in a wide range of topics and disciplines, from fashion and architecture to gender and the circular economy. Have a look at some of our recent stories to get an idea of what’s done well in the past.
  • We also appreciate stories and voices that we haven’t had on our blog before. If you’re unsure, send us a message.
  • Please include high-quality images and original artwork, if you have them.
  • Please make sure that your submission has not been published elsewhere.
  • Do you prefer writing with a prompt? Sometimes we launch open calls based on specific themes. Subscribe to our newsletter or follow our social media for the latest updates!

WHO CAN SUBMIT?

  • Writers from all countries and backgrounds are welcome. You do not have to be a journalist, and no story is too small or local.
  • We publish in English, but can offer support to writers for whom it is a second language.

WHAT DO WE OFFER?

  • We pay €250 (ex. VAT) for accepted contributions (of approx. 1,000 words) once they are ready for publication
  • We typically publish one submission per month
  • Access to an international audience of engaged creatives and design-lovers

Interested in this OPPORTUNITY?

When you are ready, please send an email to submissions (at) whatdesigncando.com with the piece in an attached text file, including any images. We review incoming submissions every two weeks, and will do our best to respond as soon as possible. If our editors like your submission, they will reach out and work with you to prepare the piece for publication. Please keep in mind that our team is small, and it may take a while for us to get back to you!