A little bit late, but here are some of the thoughts from the ‘Sustainable Interactions’ talk organized by IXDA last January in New York. Robert Fabricant, from Frog Design, moderated a panel formed by a mix of new and friendly faces.
The event was a very stimulating discussion that attempted to encourage designers to take a pro-active role in front of clients and consumers in coming up with products that will have the least environmental impact possible and will be the most socially responsible.
Some of the principles to design sustainably they mentioned:
1. Linking intervention and disposal
2. Promoting renewal and reuse
3. Promoting quality and equality
4. Achieving longevity of use
5. Decoupling ownership and identity
6. Using natural models and reflection
A few resources to check out:
“Design Is The Problem” by Nathan Shedroff
Design is a big part of the sustainability problems in the world. Design has been focused on creating meaningless
(often), disposable (though not responsibly so), trend-laden fashion items—all design. Graphic design is particularly bad,
though paper materials, at least, have a huge potential to fix this problem. [...]
The History of Stuff with Annie Leonard
“The History of Stuff” is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. “The History of Stuff” exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world.
A book: “Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things” by William McDonough and Michael Braungart
Sustainable Everyday Project
The Sustainable Everyday Project (SEP) proposes an open web platform to stimulate social conversation on possible sustainable futures: scenarios, cases and public events.
Reveal Labeling Initiative
The Reveal rating system creates a trusted, easy-to-use rating for consumers to reward companies with excellent social and environmental performance. Reveal partners with manufacturers, retailers, and NGOs to accurately provide a comprehensive, standardized, and customizable rating that helps people easily and confidently purchase products and services according to their social and environmental values.
Green maps around the world
Green Map ® System promotes inclusive participation in sustainable community development around the world, using mapmaking as our medium.
GMS supports local Green Mapmakers as they create perspective-changing community ‘portraits’ which act as comprehensive inventories for decision-making and as practical guides for residents and tourists.Mapmaking teams pair our adaptable tools and universal iconography with local knowledge and leadership to chart green living, ecological, social and cultural resources.
Interface Inc, and its carpet tiles made out of petrochemicals
[...] Interface would no longer use virgin nylon yarn to stitch its fabrics. Interface’s factories and offices would use power from renewable sources only. Interface would produce zero waste; indeed, it would reclaim its own products and use them as raw material for new textiles. And Interface would pull its suppliers and customers into its sustainability orbit, insisting that the products it bought be recyclable and nontoxic, pushing clients to think differently about carpeting – and about their own businesses. “I want to pioneer the company of the next industrial revolution,” says Ray Anderson. [...]