NEW YORK — The Society for News Design on Friday announced three World’s Best-Designed™ Newspapers and one World’s Best-Designed™ digital winner at its 40th annual workshop, which is being held here at The New School.
For the first time in SND history, one title — The New York Times — took World’s Best™ honors in both print and digital in the same year.
“Reading The Times is like taking a masterclass in visual storytelling,” wrote the judges in the print competition. “The Times’ renewed commitment to, and space for, special news sections is exemplary.”
The Times last won World’s Best-Designed Newspaper in 2009.
A separate set of digital judges lauded The Times for its multi-sensory design and risk-taking. “With astonishing consistency, The Times keeps finding new and innovative ways to extract the most from its toolkit to create immersive, memorable and illuminating journalism,” they wrote in comments that accompany the citation.
The other two print winners — Het Parool (Netherland) and Die Zeit (Germany) — won praise from the special panel of international design experts who judged the Best of News Design competition. Both publications also were honored as World’s Best last year.
“The identity of this compact newspaper lies in its mastery of typography, use of the grid, and layering of information throughout the entire reading experience,” the judges wrote of Het Parool.
They added that Het Parool, based in Amsterdam, is “a rollicking journey through the Netherlands.”
Die Zeit, which has been judged World’s Best an astonishing 11 times, is “impeccable from front to back. It feels like their best team works on every page of the newspaper.”
This is the third consecutive year that Die Zeit has reached the top of news design as a World’s Best-Designed Newspaper.
“Its art direction is show-stopping,” the judges effused about Die Zeit. “They don’t just think outside the box, they eliminate the box.”
The winners, along with Gold medalists and publications earning Judges’ Special Recognition, were celebrated at a ceremony on Friday evening at The New School.
“SND is committed to honoring inspiring work from around the world,” said Paige K. Connor, SND Vice President and the Director of User-Centered Design at Agency Q in Washington. D.C. “This global forum allows designers everywhere to share and learn from cutting-edge work. SND extends deep congratulations to the trend-setting publications leading the way.”
The SND World’s Best print competition was judged by Tim Ball (Politico Europe), Ana Gueller (La Nación), John Koning (Het Parool), Greg Manifold (The Washington Post), and Deborah Withey (independent design consultant).
The SND World’s Best digital competition was judged by Jason Chiu (The Globe and Mail), Susan Mango Curtis (Medill, Northwestern University), Steve Duenes, (The New York Times), and Josh Penrod (Minneapolis Star Tribune).
To ensure a fair competition, SND bars judges from participating in any way with their own organization’s entries.
A complete list of winners from the Best of News Design can be found at snd.org.
The Society for News Design, founded in 1979, invents, makes, promotes and teaches the world’s best visual journalism. Find out more about SND.
Judges’ Full Statement (Digital)
WINNER | The New York Times Multi-Sensory Design
With astonishing consistency, The Times keeps finding new and innovative ways to extract the most from its toolkit to create immersive, memorable and illuminating journalism. Its visuals teams are incredibly resourceful, and at their very best in blending anything they can — from crowd-sourced video, wrenching audio and full-screen photography to eye-opening data, precision mapping and flawless motion — to tell stories that fully engage readers’ hearts, minds and senses.
Judges’ Full Statements (Print)
As judges, we had a long list of expectations. We were looking for newspapers with a distinct voice that were innovative, consistent throughout (but full of surprises), well-paced, thoughtful and gave us a strong sense of their community.
We were looking for strong storytellers who know how to use photography, graphics and illustrations to drive storytelling. Our favorites were meticulous with detail and typography.
What struck us — in this trying time for newspapers — is how newsrooms with declining resources are having to make tough choices.
They’re being forced to choose between showcase pages — covers, special sections, supplements and magazine — which make up little of the finished product — and the nuts-and-bolts news pages that do the less glamorous job of informing its readership.
The newspapers that impressed us the most were those that didn’t distinguish between the two; the papers that treated every page with care. Space is so limited in print for most of us, the editing of them — and how they fit together — is more important than ever.
We are five judges who live in five countries across three continents who chose seven finalists from seven different countries. The newspapers that stood out transported us to their communities.
The three World’s Best-Designed newspapers embody all of the above qualities and left us inspired.
WINNER 1 | The New York Times, USA
Reading The Times is like taking a masterclass in visual storytelling.
Their photojournalism is at a level superior to any newspaper who entered this completion. They proved this to us consistently with highly-conceptual visual approaches, in-depth enterprise and explanatory graphics.
The Times’ renewed commitment to, and space for, special news sections is exemplary. They take full advantage of their broadsheet format, using wrap-around covers, doubletrucks and even four-page foldouts.
Their Sunday magazine is risk-taking and boundary pushing. Its impeccable art direction is a great complement to the daily newspaper. Its influence – and sharp wit – can be felt throughout the sections, even in unexpected places like the reimagined pages 2 and 3 of the main news section.
It has a true New York feel, for as much World as is here, there is a lot at the neighborhood level.
WINNER 2 | Die Zeit
Smart, bold and imaginative.
Die Zeit is impeccable from front to back. It feels like their best team works on every page of the newspaper.
Its art direction is show-stopping. They don’t just think outside the box, they eliminate the box. Their illustrations are an organic part of the page, merging with the text to become a singular unit.
They use their large format as a canvas for powerful visual journalism. They offer a deep-reading experience and present long stories in a way that’s inviting rather than daunting.
In contrast to the newspaper’s expansive canvas, the moments of creative brilliance in the magazine happen on a smaller scale but speak just as loudly. Its smart dual covers pique your interest and then, with a turn of the page, find a way to surprise you.
They know the rules and how to break them.
WINNER 3 | Het Parool
A rollicking journey through the Netherlands.
The identity of this compact newspaper lies in its mastery of typography, use of the grid, and layering of information throughout the entire reading experience.
The pacing pulls readers along using a clear headline hierarchy and supporting elements. Consistency is a hallmark for this publication; it leaves no detail overlooked.
The weekly magazine is a strong complement to the daily, striking a beautiful balance of portrait photography and elegant typography.
Overall, the visual editing of this newspaper captures the vitality of the community it represents. What a joy it must be to have Het Parool as your daily news source.