The role of product designers in the transition towards the circular economy: A reality check

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Abstract

This paper examines the role of product designers in the transition towards the circular economy. Both scientific and grey literature show remarkable optimism when it comes to role strategic and coordinating role designers could play in this transition process. However, there has been little examination of the actual role and influence designers have in practice. In this paper we review the roles that designers play in the transition towards a circular economy according to literature. Through semi-structured interviews, we uncover the views of designers themselves, which we then use to make a comparison. Our main conclusion is that designers experience a lack of knowledge and/or work in predetermined solution spaces, which prevents them from taking on the role that is expected in literature.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPlate Product Lifetimes And The Environment 2017
Subtitle of host publicationConference Proceedings
EditorsC. Bakker, R. Mugge
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherIOS Press
Pages391-396
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic) 978-1-61499-820-4
ISBN (Print) 978-1-61499-819-8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventPLATE 2017: Product Lifetimes and the Environment - Delft, Netherlands
Duration: 8 Nov 201710 Nov 2017

Publication series

NameResearch in Design Series
PublisherIOS Press
Volume9

Conference

ConferencePLATE 2017
CountryNetherlands
CityDelft
Period8/11/1710/11/17

Keywords

  • Designer's role
  • Product design
  • Practice
  • Circular economy
  • Transition

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