With a line-up of international and regional design experts, The Forum takes place at Downtown Design, and offers industry insights for design professionals and enthusiasts.

This year's programme at The Forum focuses on creative entrepreneurship, brand building and the design community's role as an agent of positive change. Featuring thought leaders like Marcus Fairs, founder and editor-in-chief of Dezeen and founder of DesignWanted Patrick Abbattista, alongside designers who both have established global design brands.

The Forum will host a diverse cross-section of industry leaders this year including: award-winning Spanish designer Tomas Alonso, Indian architect and curator Ashiesh Shah, Paris-based architect Lina Ghotmeh and circular design economy proponent Brodie Neill, mirroring the many perspectives that inform the global design scene.

Talks and workshops at The Forum aim to provide design professionals and design entrepreneurs with creative and commercial strategies to navigate the industry, with topics ranging from exploring emerging design thought to address the critical concerns of the design industry.

Renowned designer Christian Louboutin will give a talk on establishing his unique design identity, ahead of a major exhibition in February 2020 at the Palais de la Porte Doree in Paris. Acclaimed designers, Greg Natale, Dara Huang and Alessandro Minotti in their ‘How to Build a Brand’ talk will share the tools essential to building a globally resonating brand. have turned their practices into global brands.

Toni Snyder, trends forecaster for leading brands in the region, will predict the trends set to inform product and interior design in the coming years. Also at the Downtown Design Buyers Lounge, Archana Bhatia, Leadership Trainer for brands such as The Talent Enterprise, The Mindgym and Netexpat, will provide business owners and future leaders the skills to lead without fear. Focusing on the growth of contemporary design in the region, Saudi-based Architect Amy Lam will join Pinar Calimano of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts and Laura Bielecki of Ellington Developers to explore the evolving face of luxury in the residential and hospitality sectors.

For the full programme, please click here.