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PIDA – introducing the future professionals

PIDA is a competition, a game, a play with skill and creativity. But it’s a serious game. No matter how fun, it’s a preparation for a relentless reality where a designer’s efforts are met with sympathy or indifference.
This is why PIDA is important. Because packaging is important.


When you invite the students of a few of the best European colleges for packaging design to a competition – that’s how you challenge conventional packaging. Which is what PIDA is always about. Whether the current theme is the unboxing experience, reduction of food waste, champagne or the internet of things, the assignment is always about new thinking.


We challenge conventional packaging for a sustainable future

A younger generation always sees things differently. They are not restricted by old notions of how things are done. They have no concept of what life is like without the Internet. Their peers have different habits, tastes, preferences and consumption patterns than older people. At PIDA, conventional packaging is challenged with every contesting entry.


The PIDA jury likes to be surprised. They award innovativeness, new perspectives and creative thinking. They are not on the jury to award conventional and commonplace stuff. And the jury takes environmental impact into consideration when assessing and rating the contesting design projects.


Sustainability is a central topic at PIDA. Smart packaging means using low grammages, avoiding over-packing and taking the whole service life of the packaging into consideration – from waste reduction to easy recycling. The cartonboard material in itself represents a very small footprint; derived from a renewable source, recyclable up to five or six times, and ends up as energy generation.


At BillerudKorsnäs we take the development of packaging seriously. PIDA is the stage we have set for young talent to show what they can do and give new ideas, inspiration and fresh impulses to the established packaging community. This way, bonds are forged between schools and the industry. 

At PIDA, design students from colleges in France, Germany, Sweden, and the UK compete with their packaging design projects. Participation in PIDA is part of the curriculum of their educational programmes. PIDA gives students an opportunity to get to know cartonboard properly. Get acquainted with the material, see its possibilities and limitations. For most students, cartonboard will play a significant part in their professional lives. It’s a material they will have to know inside-out. 


​The competing design projects are judged by conceptualization, innovativeness, visual impact, function, user-friendliness, and environmental aspects. Prizes are awarded for highest level of Innovation, highest level of User-Friendliness, highest level of Sustainability, and the PIDA Gold Award – for the best overall packaging design concept. Beyond that, the jury may also decide to present a special prize or an honorary award. 


For 2019 – and for the first time – an all-European winner will be selected among the respective PIDA Gold Award winners. The Grand Finale event will take place at Luxe Pack in Monaco, 30th of September,  the world’s leading trade show for creative luxury packaging. A festive award ceremony will be held at the BillerudKorsnäs stand.


Apart from this big final, the regular PIDA events are held locally in each country; and feature very ambitious seminars, keynotes and panel discussions. At the events, professionals of the trade meet and mingle. Converters, printers, brand owners, designers, bloggers and journalists gather to watch the prize ceremony, meet the design students and join the seminars.


PIDA has become a recognised and respected hub for new ideas, impulses and inspiration. BillerudKorsnäs arranges PIDA in order to knit the packaging community tighter together, to charge it with young talent and energy and to take responsibility for driving the development of packaging design.


PIDA first started as part of the Swedish Design Year 2005. Over the years, interest has grown. For every year, more people want to get involved. More design schools want to participate. PIDA has become a more important part of the educational programmes. More industry professionals show up at the events, want to deliver keynotes or be on the jury. The coverage in trade press and other media gets bigger all the time. 

“Winning is such a cool feeling. PIDA is a super cool thing to be able to brag about and include in the CV.”

Mirja Dahlgren, winner of PIDA Sweden 2018