AIGA’s Market Reset Industry Research Highlights Design’s Adaptability


June 03, 2021

Media Contact

Michelle Koenigsknecht

(212) 710-3138

COVID has reset behaviors, transformed industries, and digitalization has accelerated; the industry outlook is optimistic

New York, NY—Today, AIGA, the professional association for design, released the second installment of its 2021 AIGA Design POV Research Initiative: Market Reset and Future Forward. This in-depth look at the design industry highlights the economic impacts of COVID, emerging design industry trends, and how the industry can anticipate and even create change. 

“As an ongoing part of our research, we are building insights to better assist the design profession and community to help us proactively navigate, grow, and evolve in the market,” said AIGA Executive Director Bennie F. Johnson. 

In the Market Reset chapter, findings suggest that COVID impacts were hardest on older designers outside of corporate or governmental organizations who had a more difficult time adapting to increasing technological advancements, such as integrating UX/UI Design, experience design, interaction design, data science, service design, augmented reality/virtual reality, or AI/algorithm design. 

Additionally, 30% of respondents reported having difficulty adapting to challenges brought on by the pandemic, and 43% had their salaries impacted. Optimism has never been more important as the level of competitiveness and uncertainty continued—6 out of 10 respondents believe design has a role to play in helping the industry emerge stronger from the crisis. To challenge and spur designers to accelerate adaptability, the Market Reset chapter features interactive visioning worksheets to help designers map their next steps. 

Being cognizant of the future and emerging trends has never been more critical for the Design community. This research found that new technologies such as AI/machine learning (49%), augmented reality/virtual reality (38%), collaborative design software (33%), online behavior tracking/modeling (28%); and telepresence/virtual workplaces (25%) are top emerging trends that will potentially have the biggest impact on the profession. Respondents also believe the industry will become increasingly digital, mobile, and interactive as well as multifaceted, with designers needing a more diverse set of skills. 

Additional information about the report is here: To request a copy of the report, which is available free to members of the media, please email us.

Later this month, AIGA will release new chapters on Design Leads and the Value of Design. Later this summer, information on what it means to be a designer, career pathways, market intelligence, lifelong learning, and creative communities demographics will be released. 

The AIGA Design POV was made possible thanks to the support of PepsiCo.

Media Contact

Michelle Koenigsknecht

(212) 710-3138


AIGA, the professional association for design, advances design as a professional craft, strategic advantage, and vital cultural force. As the largest community of design advocates, AIGA brings together practitioners, enthusiasts, and patrons to amplify the voice of design and creates the vision for a collective future. AIGA defines global standards and ethical practices, guides design education, inspires designers and the public, enhances professional development, and makes powerful tools and resources accessible to all.