Support for design
Who are our formats directed to?
We promote the creation and dissemination of all kinds of professional contemporary design, including game design.
Our support is generally aimed at all design professionals and at event organisers. Certain measures are aimed exclusively at professional designers who were trained in a relevant field and who founded a company (as a legal entity) less than seven years ago.
What are our funding activities?
- Biannual call for applications to support the different development phases of a project (concept, production and marketing)
- Annual call for applications for delegations to participate in national and international trade fairs or platforms
- Grants for individual participation in international events
- Coaching, mentoring, matchmaking measures and workshops
- Residencies and research trips
- Publications on contemporary Swiss design
- Support for thematic exhibitions on and knowledge exchange of contemporary Swiss design, in Switzerland and abroad
- In game design, Pro Helvetia together with partner institutions presents Swiss participation in international trade fairs under the banner SwissGames
Frequently asked questions
What types of professional design are supported?
In terms of design, we promote contemporary, professional design, e.g. textile design, fashion design, industrial design, product design, service design, graphic design, etc.
In terms of game design, we promote professionally developed digital content for devices such as computers, game consoles, mobile or mixed reality devices, the use of which requires a high degree of interaction and has a major impact on the content.
Which national and international trade fairs and platforms does Pro Helvetia participate in?
Our selection of platforms is regularly reviewed to meet needs and potential, for instance:
As part of our efforts to promote design, we organise presentations and exhibitions at Milan Design Week or host matchmaking programmes in Copenhagen.
As part of our efforts to promote game design, we organise delegations of Swiss studios to attend the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Gamescom in Cologne and Tokyo Game Show.
Participation in these platforms takes place via calls for applications.
My project is a gallery project. Does this mean I am not eligible for support?
Our design grants exclude unique items, gallery projects, craft projects, new editions and commissioned work or work done for commercial or promotional purposes (this list is not exhaustive)
What legal form do I need to submit an application? Do I need to have a company?
It depends on the phase you would like to submit your application for.
For the concept, prototype or pre-production phase, an application does not necessarily have to be submitted by a company.
For production, post-production or project extension, the application must be submitted by a legal entity (GmbH, AG, etc.). Sole proprietorships are also permitted, provided the owner is willing to convert into a legal entity.
All copyrights and rights of use should be held by the project owner.
I would like my project to remain confidential, since my brand or project is not yet patented. Is that possible?
Our experts sign a confidentiality agreement before selecting a project. The designers will be contacted prior to information about the supported projects being published.
I am unable to submit an application in English. How do I proceed?
Applications may also be submitted in German, French or Italian. A summary of the key points (no more than a single A4 page) must be submitted, which will be translated by Pro Helvetia for the international jury.
At Pro Helvetia, is the promotion of architecture and photography (e.g. for exhibitions or publications) covered by the Design division or the Visual Arts Division?
Architecture and photography are supported by the Visual Arts Division.
Do you have a question and would like to speak with a team member?
The team at a glance