Design philosophies are fundamental guiding principles that dictate how a designer approaches his/her practice. Reflections on material culture and environmental concerns (Sustainable design) can guide a design philosophy. One example is the First Things First manifesto which was launched within the graphic design community and states « We propose a reversal of priorities in favor of more useful, lasting and democratic forms of communication – a mindshift away from product marketing and toward the exploration and production of a new kind of meaning. The scope of debate is shrinking; it must expand. Consumerism is running uncontested; it must be challenged by other perspectives expressed, in part, through the visual languages and resources of design. »
In The Sciences of the Artificial by polymath Herbert A. Simon the author asserts design to be a meta-discipline of all professions. « Engineers are not the only professional designers. Everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones. The intellectual activity that produces material artifacts is no different fundamentally from the one that prescribes remedies for a sick patient or the one that devises a new sales plan for a company or a social welfare policy for a state. Design, so construed, is the core of all professional training; it is the principal mark that distinguishes the professions from the sciences. Schools of engineering, as well as schools of architecture, business, education, law, and medicine, are all centrally concerned with the process of design.