One of the best ways to stay on top of industry trends and get ahead in your field is by attending conferences! You can expand your network by meeting other pros, plus hear the best advice from industry-leading speakers. Not only can you get the best experience and knowledge out of conferences, but you’re also sure to stay inspired!
While this year may look a bit different with new health and safety measures in place, professional development is certainly not on hold for anyone. Whether it’s in-person or virtual, these conferences have something valuable to share!
To help you find the perfect conference, I’ve gathered the best list of creative conferences to attend in 2021 for marketers, designers, developers, and product managers. In no particular order or attendance format, I’ve highlighted some of the greatest conferences that would be beneficial to anyone in the ever-changing world of tech. Pull out your calendar and start adding these conference dates for 2021 before it’s too late!
Without further ado, here are 20 of the best creative conferences to attend in 2021!
Disclaimer: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these events may have been canceled, postponed, or are now virtual events. Please check each event’s website for more information.
Virtually on May 5-7, 2021.
This virtual conference is one you don’t want to miss! From UX to storytelling, accessibility to structure, Confab will bring together curious folks who are committed to making content more useful and usable. you’ll connect with others via a live broadcast, attend Q&A sessions, as well as access to live demos of helpful tools.
Virtually in 2021 with date TBD.
If you love Awwwards, you’re going to love Design Thinkers Conferences. Typically held in Amsterdam, Toronto, and Tokyo, this three-of-a-kind conference caters to designers, but also brings in speakers, developers, and dreamers alike would love — and now on a virtual stage. Hear from freelancers, company designers, and self-starters!
Virtually on February 17-19, 2021.
This conference brings next-level content for anyone in attendance! Join 8,000+ developers, engineers, managers, and execs to not only learn, but to celebrate one another in the industry. Developer Week is known for highlighting the newest and best innovations in the dev world!
Virtually on April 27-28, 2021.
Adobe Summit is the ultimate creative conference and specializes in providing impressive content for advertisers, campaign managers, and anyone in between. During the two days of the conference, you’ll get endless opportunities to learn about the newest industry trends and get to network with industry leaders. Not to mention, the virtual conference is entirely free this year!
Held on March 16-20, 2021 in Austin, Texas with digital options.
From Southwest comes South by Southwest, the one-of-a-kind conference for professionals in any industry. Conference-goers can choose from dozens of topic tracks including art and music, startups and technology, and just about everything in between. SXSW is working with the City of Austin and public health authorities on plans for a physical event in 2021; subscribe to their newsletter for conference updates!
March 25-26, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia.
March 30-31, 2021 in Auckland, New Zealand.
Date TBD in Singapore, Malaysia.
With DevOps Talks, you have not one, not two, but three chances to attend this awesome conference! DevOps Talks brings some of the best minds of development and technology operations as speakers for their three conferences. You’ll get to learn the ropes of working with Agile and learning how to better position your startup!
Virtually on April 19-21, 2021.
July 12-14, 2021 in Washington, D.C.
October 11-13, 2021 in Denver, Colorado.
August 30 – September 1, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.
December 13-15, 2020 in San Francisco, California.
An Event Apart brings together the best of design, code, and content with three full days of design and developer expert talks and interactive sessions. If you love listening to passionate speakers and are ready to be inspired, you have five options to experience this incredible event.
A digital event May 11-12, 2021.
Business meets technology at this can’t-miss conference for anyone in the tech industry. On the books are a handful of education tracks you can pick from including AI automation, how to scale your business with cloud technology, and learning through code challenges. Learn with some of the brightest minds in the world, and then kick back and relax with some fun events, too at this year’s event! Subscribe to their newsletter to be the first to hear about conference announcements.
Held on June 15 and 16-18, 2021 in Brisbane, Australia.
The Design Conference is an event for creatives. They discuss more than the future of design — but what design means in the hearts and minds of the world’s favorite creative leaders. By being transparent and vulnerable, they’re able to engineer an experience which is designed to move, motivate and connect your soul!
Held on April 7-9, 2021 in Salt Lake City, Utah.
This UX and product management conference is just what your development team needs to keep up with the ever-changing best practices in the tech industry. Three days of sharing and interactive Q&A panels are sure to spark your creativity with your team!
Held in April 2021.
Collision is an up-and-coming tech and creative conference that invites attendees from across the globe to listen to talk panelists like Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to founder and CEO of Medium, Ev Williams. They cover topics from professional development to perfecting lead generation. Are you ready to see if this is the best creative conference in 2021 yet?
Virtually held on September 7-10, 2021.
Hubspot showed everyone *exactly* how to host a successful, engaging virtual conference in 2020, and they’re doing it again for Inbound 2021! Inbound 2021 is an immersive experience over the course of four days, Sept. 7-10, uniting professionals across the globe and featuring its trademark inspirational content, networking opportunities and high-octane events. From the marketing and sales experts at HubSpot, this conference will help you spark growth in your business and have fun doing it!
Virtually held on September 9-10, 2021.
Circles conference is one of the top-growing design conferences in the U.S. and brings in design gurus to speak from all over. You’ll hear from well-known design professionals, experience 12 different types of workshops, and maybe have a blast at a virtual party, or two, or three!
Held on September 29-30, 2021 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Held in the heart of Denmark, Design Matters’21 offers a fresh experience inspired by the arts is the perfect event for all creatives. With workshops, various talk tracks, and even a perfectly curated craft-zone, this conference is sure to leave you feeling energized to dive into creative (or craft) projects of your own!
Virtually held on June 3-5, 2021.
Attend the biggest WordPress event in Europe! Now in its 10th year, WordCamp Europe is an informal, community-organised gathering of WordPress enthusiasts, from casual users to Core developers, where they come together to discuss all things WordPress, share ideas and get to know each other!
Virtually held on February 4, 2021.
New ideas happen when old ones are challenged and debated. So instead of having speakers run through the same talks that you can probably find on Youtube anyway, the UX & Product Conference is built around a new format they call “1-2-everyone” where speakers will come in pairs! Each of them pitches their view on a topic, followed by a moderated debate and a group discussion — a unique learning perspective for attendees!
UXDX APAC is March 4-5, 2021.
UXDX EMEA is October 6-8, 2021.
Break down the barriers between product, UX, design and dev to empower teams to build products that both customers love and deliver exceptional business results. UXDX will deliver fresh ideas to optimize your product teams for success with the right workflow in place. Sign up for their newsletter to be the first to hear about conference updates!
Virtually held on February 22-27, 2021.
What conferences made it to your calendar? Did we forget any of your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!
This year, we asked 1,000 leading freelancers, agencies, and creatives about the best ways to build websites, structure client services, and get paid (in full!) on time. From there we crunched the numbers, dug into the insights, and packaged up a beautiful report so you can stop guessing and start scaling your business!
Take your web design business to a whole new level, starting this month. Get insights from other design businesses like yours and start competitively charging for your services!