An app for counting earthworms? Tomatoes on a blockchain? Local shops as service hubs? Are these a serious opportunity for service design? These kinds of projects address the central dilemma of our age. This is the fact that ‘doing less harm’, in a growing economy, means doing more harm in the long run - especially when growth is measured in terms of paid-for transactions.
One new story offers meaning and hope - a story in which care for life become the only kind of growth that matters. This kind of healthy growth is happening all around us in the form of local living economies that already exist: millions of projects in which people meet practical needs using local resources. But a question remains: are scattered local initiatives an adequate response to the global challenges we face? This is where service design comes in. Interconnection is a measure of health in living systems but social and ecological assets do not readily connect themselves. Design, by fostering new relationships among people and place - can create new value, livelihoods, and enterprise. John’s talk will revolve around real-world good growth stories.