Design Switzerland is initiated by Pro Helvetia, the Swiss Arts Council.
Call for projects

Starting Power

Switzerland (c) Miguel Á. Padriñán

26 October 2020

Recently design graduates face challenges to take a step forward in their professional careers, particularly in the current context of the health crisis. Starting Power is a call for concepts from Pro Helvetia which aims to encourage and accompany the first steps in their professional career.

Up to ten Swiss designers will have the opportunity to work closely with national and international coaches to realise their very first project since completing their university degree.

The coaches will support the designers in different areas such as Marketing, PR, business development and content. The selected concept will be developed within the next months (end of concept phase by end of January 2021 latest).

The selected designers will benefit from the following support: 

  • Accompaniment of the concept phase by national and international coaches
  • Financial support by Pro Helvetia to complete the work identified during the coaching sessions

Eligibility criteria:

  • Designers must have graduated in all fields of design within the last two years (graduation in 2019 or 2020).
  • Designers must be new in the business, without any projects on the market yet.
  • Designers must be able to allocate sufficient time to work on their projects in the coming months.
  • To be eligible, designers must be either swiss citizens or long-term residents in Switzerland.

To apply, please send us your concept idea, matching the following requirements:

  • Pro Helvetia is looking for new and innovative ideas in all areas of design, responding to current challenges and addressing the needs of society, environment, economy and industry.
  • The concept description should be maximum 2 pages, in English.

To take part in the Starting Power Programme, please send your PDF application to before Monday 26 October 2020, to include:

  • Designers’ contact information
  • Short biography and portfolio (to include your education, nationality and/or residence status – max 500 signs including spaces)
  • Concept description idea (max. 2 pages)

We are looking forward to receiving your application. Applicants will receive notification in early November.

Upcoming maintenance work

The application portal myprohelvetia will be updated from 1.1.-7.1.2024. Due to these changes, open applications must be finalized and submitted via the current online portal ( by the latest 23:59 on 31 December 2023. Until this date, the deadlines and criteria outlined in the current guidelines and calls for applications apply. New applications can be created and submitted in the application portal as of 8 January 2024.