Partnership and collaboration run throughout the programme and activities of Design Manchester. We work across the creative industries, education and the cultural sector to support emerging talent, working collaboratively and connecting people across sectors, across the north and internationally.DM16 Co-op

We work closely with sponsors and partners to engage with the industry and the community, and to increase the visibility of Manchester as one of the world’s great cities of design and creativity. There is a range of opportunities for sponsoring the festival and for working with us as a partner in one or more of our programmes and events. coop-1800

In June, we were delighted to announce a partnership with the Co-op as the headline sponsors of DM16. As the Co-op’s new design-led approach rolls out across the business, we are working together to develop events and programmes to encourage and promote talent, skills development and career pathways in schools and the creative industries.

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St. John’s, developed by Allied London,  is the new project developing the former Old Granada Studios site into a new neighbourhood that will be a place for people to live, work, create and play. Highly connected with the city centre and surrounding area, St John’s promises to be Manchester’s new neighbourhood of enterprise, culture and living.

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Manchester School of Art at Manchester Metropolitan University helped found Design Manchester and remains one of its strongest supporters. The second oldest design school in Britain, Manchester School of Art is a pioneer of art and design education in the UK. Design Manchester works closely with the art school and many other faculties and departments across the university on a range of programmes, exhibitions and events during the festival and throughout the year.


Manchester recognises the role of the creative industries, including culture, the media, design and architecture, in reinforcing the city’s distinctive identity. The city’s support for key initiatives has enabled the sector to become one of the fastest drivers of growth in the region. Manchester City Council has supported the festival since the first design showcase in the Town Hall in 2013. Design Manchester has contributed to the development of Our Manchester, the Manchester Strategy 2016-2025 which provided the overarching strategic vision for the city’s future.


G . F Smith offers paper products, special makes and bespoke services tailored to the needs of the creative industries. The company has been a strong supporter of Design Manchester from the outset, hosting workshops at print and design fairs and providing specialist papers for events and for the post-festival magazine Document.


We work closely with many of the great organisations in Manchester to put on entertaining events, including the BBC who this year offer you the chance of finding out about user experience design in their Circux workshops – no previous experience necessary! – and HOME, which is hosting Design Manchester’s first film season, introduced by top designers and commentators.

Design Manchester works with numerous other event partners, supporters, studios and volunteers, whose passion and enthusiasm reflect the positive role played by the design community in the life of the city and the region.


If you are interested in partnering or would like to explore options for becoming involved, get in touch here.