Duration: 6 weeks, 1 unit/week (2h lecture + 2h seminar per unit / 24 hours total)
Design is faced with unprecedented challenges. The implications of our design decisions involve a much broader scale than that of products, and what we design addresses today a vast array of topics ranging from companies’ strategies, to business models.
Today, most of the materials we lose, and often after just one short use.
More than 80% of all materials in our products and services are destined for landfill or incinerators, with a significant amount also leaking out of the system and into natural environments. They are part of a take-make-waste model. We take finite resources, use them only for a short period of time, after which they are lost from the economy. This is an enormous loss. We miss out on the opportunity to keep products and materials in circulation, and with it all the creativity, labour, and energy that went into them.
Circular design offers a direction of travel towards a regenerative and resilient future. A future where we design products, services, and systems with the bigger picture in mind. A future where we zoom in on user needs while zooming out to consider the system in which we are creating. A future where we unlock a new frontier of creativity to address global challenges at their root.
Importantly, up to 80% of a products’ environmental impact is determined at the design phase.
You might still play a critical role in the design stage and determine the attributes and characteristics of future products, services and systems.
The module introduces students to Circular Economy in the design professions in the broadest sense. Design for Circular Economy makes inspiration from the “seven key elements” of circular economy (Design for the future, Incorporate Thecnology, Sustain and Preserve, Rethink the Business Modell, Use waste as a resource, Prioritise regenerative resources, Team Up) and aims to understand the principles, strategies and analytic techniques of circular design applied to products and systems addressing the needs of the individuals and the communities.
The StructureThe meetings will last 4 hours (2 hours of lesson + 2 hours of seminar) divided in 6 units as below.
The working groups generally consist of 4 students.
- 1. Understanding Circular Flows
- 2. Regenerative Thinking
- 3. Service Flip - Transform a Product in a Service
- 4. Natural Design Inspiration and Technology Integration
- 5. Define your Challenge and Branding the Idea
- 6. Rethink Business Model and Team up
3 November 2022
It presents the challenges of the circular economy seen as the transition to a new world where products will no longer have a life cycle with a beginning, a middle and an end. By understanding the flows of materials and resources, we will be able to contribute by designing with less waste and adding value to their ecosystems.
10 November 2022
Today, as never before, it is necessary to be aware of the systems perspective during the design process; use the right materials, design for adequate durability and extended future use.
17 November 2022
How are companies moving from selling products to transforming them into service but still generate value? Increasingly, companies are shifting from selling a product to turning that product into a service. Why? Because it can be a powerful way for an organization to become more effective and circular.
24 November 2022
The goal is to take inspiration and learn how biological systems can inspire new solutions for products or services. Biomimicry is the design of products and systems inspired by and modeled on existing biological processes , which are inherently circular and holistic.
Looking outside your industry is a great way to inspire the development of your ideas, and looking to nature is one way to do it, and how smart technologies and solutions can help us achieve this.
1 December 2022
Circular design is inherently systemic, so it is especially important to have a clear definition of what you are trying to solve and how you intend to do it. This will require a clear vision of your goal, an interdisciplinary approach and a knowledge of the means at your disposal.
You will also need to communicate the circular innovation content within your product or service, reinforcing your brand purpose to hone your message to your customers.
15 December 2022
We will develop or redefine your business modelfrom a circular design perspective.
How to create greater value and align incentives through business models based on the interaction between products and services?
And how to work involving the entire supply chain, internally within organizations and with the public sector to increase transparency and create shared value?