7 Design Conferences to attend in Copenhagen

7 badass design conferences are happening in Copenhagen, Denmark. What have these annual events have in common? They are community-driven and designed to have interaction, the interaction between participants, speakers, and the local community.

Seven upcoming design events in Copenhagen in 2023:

  1. UX Copenhagen - Mar 23-24, 2023, 2023
  2. Post.design/triangle - Sep 8-9, 2023
  3. Softer Digital Future - May 12-13, 2023
  4. Naive Yearly – Aug 11, 2023
  5. The Conference - Aug 29-30, 2023
  6. Design Matters — Sep 27-28, 2023
  7. We Love Graphic Design - Oct 7, 2023

Copenhagen, the capital city of Denmark, is a hub of culture, architecture, and innovation. With its charming streets and historic landmarks, it has become a sought-after destination for digital workers. According to Nomadlist, Copenhagen scores a 3.43 out of 5 for digital nomad-friendliness.

While Copenhagen can be expensive, with high costs for accommodation, food, and transportation, it is a popular destination for digital workers. This is due to the many free or low-cost activities, such as visiting museums or exploring the parks and gardens, that the city has to offer.

Since my visited to Copenhagen. I’m fascinated by the city and all the creative events that are happening in and around the capital of Denmark. These events merge the magic of festivals into in-depth conferences to explore alternative futures.

2023 uxcopenhagen

UX Copenhagen

Helle Martens created in 2015 UX Copenhagen, a two day conference for professionals working with and around User Experience (UX) Design. The theme for UX Copenhagen® 2023 is “Invisibility”. This edition UX Copenhagen looks at what goes into the development of creating invisible services, processes, and usable products, and at some of the other “invisible” things we do as designers, like using listening skills, methodologies from psychology, and even manipulation. UX Copenhagen will look into how to highlight biases among ourselves, how to fous on what’s missing from our designs, and how to pinpoint unintended consequences. At the conference there will be talks about the hidden ways in which some parts of the population are systematically overlooked and excluded from the world we live in, highlighting racism, ageism, and gender, and discussing how we can prevent this.

  • Next edition of UX Conference is March 20-21, 2024, with speakers like Dr. Vânia de la Fuente-Núñez and Oliver Schöndorfer. Tickets are 3000 DDK for online and 6500 DDK for the in-person event.
  • Related podcast: Episode 37 with Helle Martens, founder of UX Copenhagen
post-design-festival-copenhagen

Post.Design/Tangle

Post.Design/Tangle, founded in 2016, is an openly critical and collaborative design festival that challenges the place of graphic design, digital design and illustration in society. Post.Design/Tangle is a design festival spanning two years, four locations, and a patchworked, online hub.

  • Post.Design/Tangle is September 8 and 9, in Helsinki. The final chapter of the travelling two-year design festival will present a handful of the most interesting and progressive visual communicators in the world right now to tackle the entangled reality of design. Besides inspiring talks, the festival will ensure plenty of opportunities to (re)connect with the local design community in Helsinki and to make new connections with our line-up of speakers and the international POST audience.
  • Related article: Our 2016 interview with the founders of Post Design Festival about curating, challenges and politics.
  • Upcoming events by Post Design Festival
Softer Digital Futures

Softer Digital Futures

Softer is platform built on a feminist consciousness. They believe that softer values, such as care, empathy, community, collaboration and multiplicity is the path towards equal opportunities to learn and practice digital art and design. Their first gathering took place in April of 2022.

  • Softer Digital Futures 2023 is happening May 12-13 at the magical location at Refshaleøen, Copenhagen. Eexploring how softer values should influence the directions of digital futures.
naive yearly

Naive Yearly

Room for the quiet, odd and poetic web.
Naive Yearly gathers people who expand what the web is and can be: artists, designers, educators, developers, writers and organizers who avoid nostalgia and technological utopias but use the internet and open protocols to invite us to see the world anew in the present tense.

  • First edition of Naive Yearly is August 11, 2023 at The National Film School of Denmark in Copenhagen.
The Conf Malmö entree

The Conference

The Conference is a two-day conference of super-curated talks, where curious minds from all over the world meet to delve further into the promises and pitfalls of the digital development. 2022 Marked the 10th year anniversay of The Conference. The Conference is in Malmö, Sweden which is only 40 minutes from Copenhagen. Can't wait till the next edition late August? The Conference offers their catalog of talks for free to watch. Enjoy 300+ talks with people from all over the world representing all kinds of disciplines.

  • The Conference is August 29 - 30, 2023 at Slagthuset in Malmö, Sweden.
  • Read announcenment: The Conference Malmö
  • Related article: Our 2016 interview with Cecilia Frankel of The Conference on removing the clutter, be of help and have gender equal speaker line-ups.
design-matters-copenhagen

Design Matters

Design Matters is a conference on new movements in Digital Design. They bring together practitioners from the best and most happening companies around the world. Design Matters is created by designers, for designers!

  • Design Matters Copenhagen is September 27th and 28th, 2023. The event takes place online and in-person. The talks and workshops of the conference will revolve around the following themes: The AI Generation, The Power of Unity, Leading with Craft.
  • On June 2nd + 3rd, 2023 the team behind Design Matters Copenhagen hosts in Tokyo Design Matters Tokyo.
  • On January 31 and February 1st, 2024 Design Matters hosted their second edition of Design Matters MX in Mexico City and online.
    More details and tickets you find on designmatters.mx
  • Upcoming events by Design Matters
WE LOVE GRAPHIC DESIGN 2022 giorgia lupi

We Love Graphic Design

We Love Graphic Design is an annual one day seminar held in Copenhagen, celebrating graphic design by showcasing the versatility and relevance of this broad field through a line-up featuring some of the most important, inspirational and insanely creative graphic designers right now.

  • We Love Graphic Design is October 7, 2023

Other notable events in Copenhagen

  • CPH:DOX, it's one of the biggest documentary film festivals in the world. The next edition kicks off on the 15th to 26th of March 2023. Since 2003, CPH:DOX offers a wide programme with anything from the works of prominent international directors to new talent, from spectacular premieres to experimental film/video works in the field between cinema and visual art.
  • 3 days of design is Denmark's most important design fair, and takes place early summer from 7 to 9 June 2023. During the event, design brands throw open their showrooms across the Danish capital. 3 Days of Design takes place in venues across Copenhagen.
  • UIA World Congress of Architects, the event takes place from the 2nd to 6th of July, 2023. Experience fascinating keynotes, cross-sector networking, the latest groundbreaking scientific research on architecture and sustainability, and much more.

Next to these bigger design conferences, there are lots of smaller meetups, morning or evening events. Local organizations like CHPUX and chapters of Ladies, Wine & Design, The Design Kids and CreativeMornings organize events frequently. Research and design lab SPACE10 organizes events on design and innovation as well.

An hour from Copenhagen is the Social Service Club. Social Service Club is a community for the rebels on a mission to explore, celebrate and nurture our human potential. Every summer they turn our farm into a living classroom for one week of collective dreaming and individual introspection.

Travel to Copenhagen

Traveling by train is a comfortable and eco-friendly option, with several routes available from nearby countries. Bus travel is also affordable, with many companies offering direct routes from major cities in Europe. Alternatively, flying into Copenhagen is a great choice for those coming from further, with several airlines offering direct flights from major cities worldwide. Book your travel on kiwi.com get the best deals.

That’s It For Copenhagen!

As you can see, Copenhagen is a treasure trove of creativity and innovation, with events that are inclusive, community-focused, and designed to spark interaction and inspiration. Whether you attend a multi-day festival or a smaller meetup, you are sure to connect with like-minded people who share your passion for design and innovation. Mark your calendar and get ready for an unforgettable experience that will expand your skills and fuel your creativity. I hope you have found this guide useful and that it has inspired you to attend one of the many exciting design events in Copenhagen. And if we missed any events, please let us know - I'd love to hear from you!

* All works and screenshots are property of their respective owners.

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