Conference PaperPDF Available

How you Define is How you Design; Problematic Definitions of Sustainability in Education

  • S-RAD; Sustainability Research and Design
A preview of the PDF is not available
... There is a requirement for these to be framed appropriately as Christensen (2008) alluded to, that is, on a substantial definition of unsustainability. A Critical understanding what the problem of unsustainability is informing the design and business strategies to move towards sustainability (Clune 2008) is first required. ...
Full-text available
The move towards service design for the preservation of natural resources – in the form of Product System Services has been widely sited (i.e. Cook, Bhamra et al. 2006; Tukker and Tischner 2006) as a means to counter what Manzini terms Product Based Wellbeing (2003a), that is, wellbeing being derived from the purchasing and ownership of products, which is seen to be ecologically and socially unsustainable. Product Based Wellbeing identifies individual ownership of products as being the problem, the most prominent design response to which has been put forward in Product Service Systems (PSS), often referred to as a functional economy (Mont 2002). This paper engages in the complexity of Product Service Systems, to be able to deliver the preservation of natural resources they proclaim.
... The design of the 'participatory design workshop' is an activity in itself that follows the design process (see for example Cruickshank and Evans, 2012). The participatory design workshop developed for this project spent an equal amount of time defining the problem following Clune's (2008) principle of 'how you define is how you design' and Fry's (2004) critique of sustainable design approaches, in that success depends on being critically informed. The participatory design workshops were therefore separated into two all day events, focused on defining the problem of unsustainability, and designing potential solutions. ...
... It encourages engagement in the relational complexity of why everyday practices are completed. The hypothesis is that more refined problem definitions lead to more refined design solutions for sustainability or 'how you define is how you design' (Clune, 2008). ...
... The major concern of Ramirez's work is the interpretation of DfS by staff: 'seem[ing] to interpret Sustainable Design as being identical with ecological design or green design, which focuses mostly on minimisation of environmental impacts' (2007, p. 3). The above definition of sustainability is concerning given the proposal of how you define is how you design (Clune 2008) in that how a problem is defined correlates significantly with the designed outcome. It appears that design educators are teaching only half of the available solutions by focusing on technical solutions via 'EcoDesign' addressing embodied consumption, while negating the possibility of social solutions to address inconspicuous consumption. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper illustrates how a student-centred approach to teaching, assisted students to engage in the subject of Design for Sustainability (DfS), and to exhibit qualities of ‘deep learning’. The results are drawn from a four year action research case study at the University of Western Sydney, where deep learning was implemented as an intervention strategy to enable Industrial Design students to ‘Design for Sustainability’. The success of the intervention was measured by analysing student ‘conceptual design scenarios’. In the first instance, deep learning and design education appear to be a perfect fit, as deep learning almost mirrors the problem-based-learning model of the design studio. However in practice this assumption had particular difficulties delivering conceptual solutions for sustainability from Industrial Design students. This is summated into two key difficulties that this study attempted to overcome. A. What happens when the Master does not know? From a theoretical perspective the traditional master and apprentice model of the design studio was problematic - to pass down expertise from the practitioner to the student is a flawed model when the educators (masters) understanding of sustainability has been identified as limited. B. Why are students not engaged? The author’s experience teaching sustainable design identified a limited engagement from students to Design for Sustainability. The paper expands on these difficulties, before presenting how a student-centred approach to teaching was introduced at the University of Western Sydney, as a potential antidote.
This chapter critiques design and design practices from historical, social, cultural and sustainable perspectives as a basis for opening up a broader perspective on the ways design and designing are seen within mainstream design and technology education in schools. This chapter is divided into four broad sections. The first section explores the ways that design practitioners, theorists and historians critique past and present practices of design from within the profession. This is followed by an outlining of approaches that some designers have taken in using design itself as a way of critiquing society and culture. The focus then turns to design and technology education and highlights concerns that have been identified both at school and higher education level. Finally, consideration is given to examples that illustrate positive approaches to bringing broader and more critical approaches to design and technology in classrooms, including ways that are developed in detail in further chapters in this book.
Deep learning is a key strategy by which students extract meaning and understanding from course materials and experiences. Because of the range and interconnectedness of environmental, social and economic issues, and the importance of interdisciplinary thinking and holistic insight, deep learning is particularly relevant in the context of education for sustainability. However, deep learning can be inhibited if the existing interests or backgrounds of students have a strong disciplinary focus. This paper reviews factors that influence deep learning and discusses some ways in which environmental educators can encourage students to use deep learning strategies. Such strategies are seen to be necessary to maximise the benefits from environmental courses and are likely to foster creative interdisciplinary approaches to sustainability beyond the institution.
Most programs to foster sustainable behavior continue to be based upon models of behavior change that psychological research has found to be limited. Although psychology has much to contribute to the design of effective programs to foster sustainable behavior, little attention has been paid to ensuring that psychological knowledge is accessible to those who design environmental programs. This article presents a process. community-based social marketing, that attempts to make psychological knowledge relevant and accessible to these individuals. Further, it provides two case studies in which program planners have utilized this approach to deliver their initiatives. Finally, it reflects on the obstacles that exist to incorporating psychological expertise into programs to promote sustainable behavior.
Ecodesign is a promising approach to sustainable production and consumption, Four different types of ecodesign innovations are distinguished. Product improvements and redesign (types 1 and 2) can realize eco-efficiency improvements of up to 80 per cent (a factor of 5). To achieve the breakthrough to sustainability, however, product function and system innovations (types 3 and 4) will be needed. It is recommended that implementation of these concepts be promoted through extensive demonstration programmes and activities by national-level organisms. Government actions in support of ecodesign innovations in the near future are badly needed.
Input–output modeling of primary energy and greenhouse gas embodiments in goods and services is a useful technique for designing greenhouse gas abatement policies. The present paper describes direct and indirect primary energy and greenhouse gas requirements for a given set of Australian final consumption. It considers sectoral disparities in energy prices, capital formation and international trade flows and it accounts for embodiments in the Gross National Expenditure as well as the Gross Domestic Product. Primary energy and greenhouse gas intensities in terms of MJ/$ and kg CO2-e/$ are reported, as well as national balances of primary energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
In this article, the two authors of Becoming Critical: education, knowledge and action research look back at the book's history since its publication 20 years ago. We describe how the book was originally written, and the diverse responses and reactions that it has produced. We identify some of the book's inadequacies and limitations, and consider some of the intellectual and educational changes that have occurred over the last 20 years that any new edition would need to address. We conclude by recognising how, in any new edition of the book, we would need to demonstrate the possibility and desirability of ‘staying critical’ in the postmodern world.
Action learning is a central part of many work-based learning programmes, and, to be effective, requires the learner to engage in reflective learning. This article looks at how the reflective learning cycle can be integrated with action learning processes to create the dynamic of enhanced business effectiveness and individual understanding. Through a case study of a university‐corporate partnership, the article explores how a virtual learning environment (web-based materials and interactive forum) can be integrated effectively into the action learning-reflection cycle. It is suggested that the combination of action learning and virtual technology has the potential for enhancing learning, providing data for interactive discussions, and a means of disseminating new knowledge and management best practice within organisations.