UCD Award

The Stanley Caplan User-Centered Design Award

The Award

The award emphasizes both product design and the user-centered design (UCD) methods used to specify and achieve the design. 

Emphasis is placed on innovative and user-centered approaches to Human Factors and Industrial Design.  Consideration is limited to products, software or systems that are purchased for use in the home, in the workplace, or while mobile. They include consumer, commercial, and medical products, but exclude military equipment or systems. The product or system nominated has be operational at the time of nomination.  Products already on the market for more than three years are not considered.

Founded in 2001, the award has been running continuously for over two decades. Over the years, the Award has honored a wide variety of products and companies.

The Product Design Technical Group (PDTG)

The Product Design Technical Group (PDTG) within the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) is committed to the design and development of products that are not only functional and safe but also user-friendly and appealing. The PDTG's members are engaged in enhancing the design of a wide range of products, from everyday consumer items to commercial and industrial goods. Their focus encompasses the entire spectrum of product design, emphasizing the importance of creating solutions that are accessible, efficient, and satisfying for users across various contexts and industries.

How is this award different from other design awards?

The award emphasizes both product design and the user-centered design (UCD) methods used to specify and achieve the design. See the full judging criteria here.

Who's allowed to nominate a product?

Nominations will be accepted from individuals nominating others or nominating themselves.  See the Nominate page for more information.

Do nominees have to be a member of HFES and/or the PDTG?

No. Award candidates do NOT have to be a member of HFES or of the PDTG.  All individuals and/or teams are invited to participate. 

Does the product/system have to be already on the market before it's nominated?

No. The product or system being nominated must be operational at the time of submission.  At a minimum, it must be scheduled for actual use within one year of its submission with no substantial changes.  At a maximum, the product or system may have been in actual use for up to three years.

Feel free to contact us for help determining whether you qualify.

Is there a fee to apply?

No, there is no charge to apply for this award.

What is the deadline to apply?

The deadline to apply is listed on the Nominate page. 

What do winners receive?

Interested in being a judge?

Have you ever wondered what it's like to be a judge for the annual Stanley Caplan User Centered Product Design Award? Are you eagerly awaiting another opportunity to be a judge after enjoying the experiencing in prior years? Well now's your chance!  Be considered for the panel of judges by submitting your information on the Judge page.

Who is Stanley Caplan?

The Stanley Caplan User-Centered Product Design Award is named in honor of Stanley Caplan, a distinguished fellow of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES). This accolade recognizes his significant contributions and unwavering commitment to advancing the field of user-centered design and research. Caplan's work has been instrumental in promoting the importance of designing products with the end-user in mind, both within the industry and among professionals. Additionally, he has played a pivotal role in mentoring and guiding others to champion user-centered approaches in their work, ensuring that the principles of usability and human factors are integral to product design processes. This award celebrates Caplan's lasting impact on the field and his dedication to fostering an understanding of how user-centered design can enhance product effectiveness, safety, and user satisfaction.

Who created the logo?

Used for the first time in 2015, the award features a logo designed by the 2013 winner, Charles L Mauro CHFP, President/Founder, MauroNewMedia, Inc.

What if I have more questions?

We're here to help so please contact us anytime.