A concept design aimed to promote transparency in the charity sector has won COFA graduate Masato Sano the graphic design graduate of the year award for NSW.

Sano studied a Bachelor of Design at COFA, majoring in graphic and object design.

As part of his submission, Sano created an online platform for the not-for-profit sector in Australia, allowing users to compare and donate to multiple charities, in an effort to promote greater transparency in the sector.

His winning concept for the portfolio-based award reflects his belief that design should always go “beyond the visual and do more than simply communicate”.

Sano, who received he COFA Dean’s Award in 2011, says he was influenced by his teachers who “emphasised the importance of ethics in the design process, and using one’s skills for a purpose.“

“I’d like to think my talents can be used for greater social good, and not merely for aesthetic functions.”

Masato is now in the running for the Australasian Graduate of the Year Award, announced in May.