With 2017 drawing to a close, you may well be looking to 2018 for upcoming events and conferences. After all, what better way to get a crash course in emerging technologies or make fast professional connections than immersing yourself in the design world for a few days? Plus, while the world itself is vast, the design community is small and interconnected, making international events even more fruitful.
We may not be into the new year yet, but many of the larger, more popular events tend to release early-bird tickets (and also sell out quickly...), so getting your spot booked in advance is definitely advised. Because of that, we compiled some of the most anticipated events and conferences for designers in 2018.
Although they range from broad design conferences to more niche aspects of the industry, all of them are sure to attract big crowds and expert panels, speakers and keynotes.
If you’re attending any events that aren’t listed below just let us know in the comments -- we’re always hoping to find out what you’re attending and if it is of any benefit to the rest of our readers!
- February 3-February 8 in Lyon, France
Interaction Week 18 aims to reflect on how technology and design are shaping the world moving forward by building bridges across cultures, disciplines, and industries to reach shared goals. At the 2018 conference, there will be experts from a range of fields and an opportunity for designers to participate in conversations on design, the industry, the environment in which they work, and the role of design within society as a whole.
Awwwards Conference 2018
- February 7-February 9 in Berlin, Germany
- May 10-May 11 in San Francisco, California
Awwwards is the most visited online awards platform in the world, and each year they hold their annual Awwwards Conference. This year the event takes place in both San Francisco and Berlin where you’ll have the opportunity to immerse yourself with the leaders in the tech and design world, and finally, meet those faces of the people you follow online. It’s a great chance to learn at a live event rather than get the news afterward online.
The UX Conference 2018
- February 20 in London, United Kingdom
The UX Conference in London will be exploring how designers can improve collaboration between themselves and business stakeholders. It’s set to be an insightful day of practical UX design talks for every designer, from junior to senior, and from a business person's perspective, it will certainly be interesting to hear how designers to perceive the relationship between both parties.
February 27-March 1 in Seattle, Washington
Seattle is bursting at the seams with all the recent high-tech development, with companies big and small opening offices there. In particular, the user experience scene is exploding, so if you’re a designer and haven’t been to the Emerald City before then this may well be the perfect time. ConveyUX is a great opportunity for locals and visitors to get together and enjoy the best the city has to offer while also chowing down on all things UX.
ACM IUI 2018
- March 7-March 11 in Tokyo, Japan
ACM IUI 2018 is the 23rd annual meeting of the intelligent interfaces community and serves as a premier international event for reporting on research and development of intelligent user interfaces. The conference is where the Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) community meets the Artificial Intelligence (AI) community - and thus, it’s at the forefront of innovation in both worlds. The event also places interest on design and the arts, which offers professionals from the design world an opportunity to interact with technically talent minds.
LX: Leading Experience 2018
- March 19-March 20 in San Francisco, California
LX 2018 prepares leaders in the design world for the next hurdles they’re likely to face in the coming year, including:
- Designing organizations,
- Driving change at scale, and
- Continuously delivering better outcomes for businesses and people.
If you’re leading the design and delivery of great experiences, this is even for you, with conversations on topics across design, wider organizational matters, and leadership in a world of increasing complexity.
An Event Apart
- April 2-April 4 in Seattle, Washington
- June 25-June 27 in Boston, Massachusetts
- July 30-August 1 in Washington, D.C.
- August 27-August 29 in Chicago, Illinois
- October 8-October 10 in Florida
- December 10-December 12 in San Francisco, California
Each edition of ‘An Event Apart’ has its own format, length, and structure, but ultimately they’re all geared towards designers, with an intense focus placed on digital design, UX, content, code, and more.
Smashing Conference 2018
- April 17-18 in San Francisco, California
Smashing Conference also takes place in Toronto and London in 2018, but the San Francisco edition is worth a trip is you’re in the area. The third year of the Californian-based conference is all about exploring strategies for breaking out and leaving behind the generic designs and ideas that might be plaguing your growth as a designer or design agency.
99U Conference 2018
- May 9-May 11 in New York City, NY
The 99U Conference is a live experience that inspires creative professionals to bring their ideas to life and shape the future of the design industry. You’ll have the chance to learn from the world’s top thinkers and doers who offer a series of pragmatic, real-world insights over the course of two days.
User Experience Lisbon 2018
- May 22-May 25 in Lisbon, Portugal
UXLx is a premier User Experience Conference, with a speaker lineup that really is the cream of the crop from the industry worldwide. There are set to be 10 thought-provoking talks plus 20 practical workshops, all of which are sure to inspire! Attendees from around 40 different countries make for a truly international event, thus, it’s a great way to meet like-minded peeps from all over the world!
Enterprise UX 2018
June 13-June 15 in San Francisco, California
Each year, over 500 enterprise leaders meet at Enterprise UX to sharpen their ability to create transformational products at scale: 2018 is going to be no different! You can come along to EUX to build your brand and have conversations that will move your design forward at warp speed.
Design & Content 2018
July 25- July 27 in Vancouver, Canada
The world’s premier conference for designers and content strategists returns to Vancouver in 2018. Design & Content is the place where you’ll hear from industry leaders about crafting experiences and telling stories that shape the future of the web. A full day of workshops, two days of talks and thoughtful extras add up for a conference that content creators and strategists cannot afford to miss.
UX Week 2018
August 21-August 24 in San Francisco, California
Design professionals from all over the world gather for four days of community, inspiration and skills building in San Francisco. Now in its 15th year, UX Week delivers new tools you can put to use immediately, which is always a plus! Like many of the other events held later in 2018, you can keep an eye out for speakers, more information and details regarding UX Week over the coming months.
September 26-September 27 in Copenhagen, Denmark
Design Matters aims to bring together design practitioners from around the world for two days of design talks, workshops, discussions and socializing in Copenhagen. You’ll have the chance to meet designers from the most exciting companies working with apps, websites and physical products.
Each will share their firsthand knowledge and personal stories about creating experiences that connect, engage and inspire users. The themes for 2018 are: Conversational UI, Spreading the Product Design DNA and Embrace Failure!
Adobe MAX Conference 2018
October 15-October 17 in Los Angeles, California
Adobe MAX has fast become the premier conference for creatives with designers, photographers, web coders, video makers, and illustrators coming from all over the world to LA for the main event of the year. This is a truly amazing opportunity to meet the best creatives in the world, find out what they’re working on, what they expect the next 12 months to hold, and learn much, much more.
Which design event will you be jetting off to? Tell us in the comments!
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