Without answers to these questions that people are seeking, there are limits to the role consumption can play in our shift to a more sustainable economic model . As product developers, designers, tinkerers, and technologists, we have the means to uncover these answers, and communicate the backstories of the things that we make.
CLASS CALENDAR January 26: Intro February 1: Stakeholder- Consumers February 8: Stakeholder- Citizen Activists February 22: Stakeholder- Government March 1: Stakeholder- Business Leaders March 8: Mid Point Project Review March 22: Impacts- Energy Emissions March 29: Impacts- Human Health April 5: Impacts- Resources, Biodiversity April 12: Impacts- Social and Economic April 19: Final Presentations April 26: Final Presentations
CLASS RULES Email/call if you will be late or miss a class. Lids down when a fellow student is speaking. Grade: Showing up and verbally participating: 25% Tracking progress on blog: 25% Final presentation deliverable: 25% Final presentation “pitch”: 25% Public speaking and argument-building skill development will be part of this class.
CLASS TEXTS Meadows, Donella (1999) Leverage Points: Places to Intervene in a System. The Sustainability Institute. http://www.sustainabilityinstitute.org/pubs/Leverage_Points.pdf McDonough, Michael Cradle to Cradle, Remaking the Way We Make Things . North Point Press, 2002. Sterling, Bruce, Shaping Things , MIT Press, 2005. Shapiro, Mark, Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products , Chelsea Green Publishing, 2007. Szasz, Abdrew, Shopping our Way to Safety , University of Minnesota Press, 2008.
AS CREATORS, KNOW WHAT’S IN THE STUFF YOU MAKE AS INTERACTION DESIGNERS, CREATE TOOLS + SYSTEMS SO THAT WE CAN ACCESS PRODUCT TRUTH PROVOCATION
WHY I PICK ON YOU: YOU KNOW HOW TO MAKE THINGS TALK
SYSTEMS THINKING Foundation in system dynamics. Prof. Jay Forrester MIT: 1956 how do we test ideas about social systems the way we test ideas in engineering? Analysis: to break into constiutuent parts. Systems Thinking: How does the thing being studied interact with all of the constituents in the system. When it’s useful: understanding complexity. Big intractable problems. Recurring problems that have been made worse by past attempts to fix them. Actions that affect the environment. Solutions not obvious. – Daniel Aronson
Capitalism and Freedom “ There is one and only one social responsibility of business–to use it resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game, which is to say, engages in open and free competition without deception or fraud." MILTON FRIEDMAN HAS FRAMED OUR THINKING FOR THE PAST 30+ YEARS
STAKEHOLDER VS. SHAREHOLDER MANAGEMENT Stakeholder: Emphasize responsibility over profitability Organizations are coalitions to serve all parties involved Belief that strongly motivated employees and high levels of trust with all parties leads to improved societal health Shareholder: Emphasize profitability over responsibility Organizations are the instruments of its owners Belief that enlightened self interest and market based relationships in pursuit of maximal value will result in maximized societal wealth
LIFE CYCLE ANALYSIS IS A FRAMEWORK FOR MEASURING IMPACTS Graph adapted with permission from Robert Kozak and Christopher Gaston, "Life-Cycle Analysis," presented at the Workshop on Climate and Forestry, Orcas Island, WA, November 13-16, 2001.
PRIUS OR HUMMER SOURCE: ROCKY MOUNTAIN INSTITUTE
BIODIESEL ETHANOL METHANE OR FOSSIL FUEL SOURCE:THE OIL DRUM
LCA GETS US TO FOCUS ON WHERE WE CAN MAKE BIGGEST IMPACT, AND NOT GET DISTRACTED WITH GREEN SELF-DELUSION BUT, LCA ONLY ASSESSES POTENTIAL IMPACTS AND NOT REAL IMPACTS AND THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE: LCA DATA IS HARD TO GET
“ Spime: manufactured objects whose informational support is so overwhelmingly extensive and rich that they are regarded as material instantiations of an immaterial system. Spimes begin and end as data. They are designed on screens, fabricated by digital means, and precisely tracked through space and time throughout their earthly sojourn.”
Sustainability (sorting and reshuffling the garbage)
3D virtual models of objects -- virtual CAD/CAM Rapid prototyping of objects
FROM: CONSUMPTION SEPARATE FROM PRODUCTION NO KNOWLEDGE OF PRODUCT BACKSTORY DESIGN PROVIDES FUNCTION, FORM, AT BEST A GREAT EXPERIENCE ULTIMATE DESIGN OBJECT: IPHONE TO: RECONNECT CONSUMERS TO ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS DEEP KNOWLEDGE OF PRODUCT BACKSTORY DESIGN TO CREATE TOOLS FOR CULTURAL CHANGE ULTIMATE DESIGN OBJECT: SPIME SHIFTING ROLE FOR CREATORS
THE CREATOR’S SPHERE OF INFLUENCE DESIGN FREEDOM AND POSSIBILITY TO INFLUENCE CUMULATIVE LOCK IN OF ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT INTO DESIGN COSTS OF CHANGING DESIGN TIME HIGH
THE OBJECT WHICH LABOR PRODUCES, ITS PRODUCT, CONFRONTS IT AS SOMETHING ALIEN, AS A POWER WHICH EXISTS INDEPENDENTLY OF THE PRODUCER. -K. MARX, 1844