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The inaugural Prince Philip Prize was awarded in 1968, during Prince Philip's visit to Australia in May.

Over 90 entries were received and the winning entry was a self-propelled grain header, designed by Kenneth Gibson. At the Awards presentation, Prince Philip said: “I hope this whole exercise will provoke a great deal of discussion and argument on the subject of Industrial Design. I don't mind in the least if people disagree violently with our choice because it will mean that this is a subject worth attention and worthy of well-informed criticism.”

With Prince Philip as figurehead, the Prince Philip Prize thrived for the next 10 years. Manufacturers and designers strongly supported the program and consumer perception of design was growing.

The battle of convincing manufacturers of the value of design had largely been won: Industrial Design was regarded as an essential phase in any product development project. Despite the success of the Prince Philip Prize, the IDCA faced funding difficulties in the mid 1970s and was forced to temporarily close in 1976.
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