Survey of lighting designers reflects mixed economic outlook

The International Assn. of Lighting Designers' economic impact survey shows just as many designers are cautiously optimistic, as those who are struggling or feeling pessimistic about the downturn.


A recent survey by the International Assn. of Lighting Designers (IALD) shows the group’s membership has a mixed outlook, with just as many designers taking a cautiously positive view, as those who feeling pessimistic about the months ahead.

“It's not all doom and gloom," said IALD executive vice president Marsha Turner. "There is a lot of trepidation, understandably, but there is definite optimism that comes through in the feedback."

For example, when asked how their businesses have been impacted by the current economic downturn, about 75% of respondents said they are experiencing either a strong negative or slight negative impact, 11% of respondents reported a positive impact, and 14% reported no change. Of those reporting a negative impact, 53% said they’ve experienced a tightening of expenses or spending freeze due to the economic climate, and 28% have experienced hiring freezes. On a positive note, 29% have experienced no cutbacks.

Other responses include:
* Only 15% of respondents have experienced layoffs at their businesses
* The greatest challenges reported include finding new projects (46%), collecting payments owed (37%), and keeping current projects (25%)
* Regarding expected growth in the first and second quarters of 2009, almost an equal number of respondents said they expect no growth, a slight/strong decline, or a slight/strong growth.

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