PARIS—Ahead of Silmo, scheduled for September 29 through October 2, trade show organizers have announced the nominees for two of the show’s prestigious awards: the IOA International Optician of the Year Award and the 2023 Optical Design Contest. In addition, Silmo is launching a Responsible Company Prize this year to recognize companies for their progress in social and environmental responsibility. Each year, The International Opticians Association awards the International Optician of the Year award in partnership with Silmo Paris to highlight one optician who demonstrates exemplary professionalism.

The jury has preselected this year’s five finalists: Jean-François Porte from France; Phernell Walker and Carrie Wilson from the U.S.; Angela Mitchell from New Zealand; and Vitor Manuel Simoes Martins from Portugal.

Launched in 2022, the Optical Design Contest at Silmo aims to be a stepping stone for the next generation of eyewear designers and to stimulate creative innovation in eyewear through students form design schools around the world. This year’s theme is Sport. The contest is open to all students enrolled in a design course at a level equivalent to or higher than the third year post-baccalaureate.

The jury, chaired by architect and designer Marie-Christine Dorner and made up of optics and design professionals, has chosen this year’s nominees. They are: INFRAVISION Revealing the invisible, redefining outdoor exploration by Romain Globeaux – LISAA (France); SIDE PARK Climbing with confidence by Émilie Chague & Adrien Galois - Ecole Design de Nantes (France); SYLANS EYEWEAR Glacier glasses revisited by Juliette Favre & Adrien Nabot - Lycée Léonard de Vinci (France); VISION Improving the comfort of volleyball players by Clément Kimpe – ESDAC (France); SPORTVISOR GlassesXstreme, a new perspective on sport by Tadj Belakhdar – ESDAC (France); ECHO GLASS Facilitating sport for the deaf and hard of hearing by Éléa Michel & Jonathan Smith Brière de l’Isle – ENSAAMA (France); TRIBI Multifunction eyewear for triathlon & biathlon athletes by Hugo Plessis – ESDAC (France); VIEWAVE Finding your way around a pool without using your eyesight by Orane Reynard & Florian Pillard – ENSAAMA (France); and RAYZOR Augmented reality glasses for football players by Adi Abramov – Shenkar College of Engineering, Design and Art (Israel).

This year, Silmo is also launching its Responsible Company Prize, recognizing companies for their progress in social and environmental responsibility. The prize is open to all exhibitors and aims to “distinguish one company from the optical sector for its contribution to reducing its environmental footprint and optimizing its social impact. Silmo intends on encouraging emulation rather than competition among companies,” organizers said.

The application process will allow Silmo to collect examples of good corporate practices and further highlight these practices to inspire the entire community. All participating companies will receive personalized recommendations toward furthering their approach. Silmo is partnering with CSR agency Hyssop, which will develop the specifications for the prize and provide a third-party evaluation of the companies submitting applications. The Responsible Company Prize takes three main areas into account:

1. Global and holistic efforts: the prize aims to evaluate companies as a whole. The environmental aspect will be taken into account alongside comprehensive CSR subjects including responsible purchasing, product life cycle, labor conditions, solidarity and more. Each company will be assessed according to 17 criteria corresponding to the CSR challenges specific to optical professionals, and this evaluation will take into account both the company’s existing commitments and its future undertakings and objectives.

2. Credibility and accessibility: the prize will be rigorous, with a solid frame of reference and clear rating criteria supported by the CSR expertise of recognized specialists in the field. However, it will remain attainable so that everyone may participate and demonstrate their efforts. Companies are not required to demonstrate measures in every area, but rather actions that show awareness of the issues and a strong determination to make progress at the highest level.

3. Precision and Tangibility: Companies will be asked precise questions based on tangible elements that focus on action rather than blanket CSR statements. Companies submitting applications will be asked to provide evidence and indicators that justify claims. The questionnaire is comprehensive, and yet it is as simplified as possible to remain within everyone’s reach, including those that do not necessarily have a great deal of time to devote to it.

The independent jury panel is made up of optical professionals, a designer and CSR experts including CSR journalists and Hyssop consultants. All members of the jury promise to observe a code of honor and may not evaluate the application of a company they have worked for.

Details on how to submit an application will be shared soon. The winning company will be announced on September 30, during the Silmo d’Or evening.