Can good design save the world?
Yes, good design can help improve the world and many designers are acknowledging the social and environmental impacts of their design decisions and search for solutions to create a better tomorrow.
Instead of focusing solely on aesthetics, designers can start taking one the challenges the world currently faces and try to solve the problem. The societal and environmental changes our planet is experiencing require new design solutions. Collaborate with different disciplines is needed to solve problems, have a very clear and common goal to work towards.
To be qualified as good design, what does it mean?
May the world doesn't need to be rescued but the world needs to be re-designed in a way that provides more for humanity while demanding less from the planet. It is our collective responsibility to design the future we want to see.
Now that consumerism continues to decline in the Western world, the products that remain should be better in every aspect. People want to make healthy and realistic choices and think twice before they buy something. The tools for our everyday life should be more thoughtful, better looking and longer-lasting than their existing counterparts. This requires a specialists approach and continue working on a product, to improve until you get it right.
New Fibres and materials
We will not be thinking in products but in raw materials, once you are done with a product send it back to the factory and new products will be made using the reclaimed materials, tailored to the user. Invent new materials that are sustainable or design objects from reclaimed materials or materials that are normally seen as waste.
Consider the weight
Consider the weight and volume of an object, use just enough to create a well functioning product, take things away instead of adding. Create modular design to make it possible to replace parts while not having to throw away the entire product.
Individual, customable and local
Due to new technological possibilities, objects can be made more smart, more individual while using less materials. Locally and individually made means no transport and no waste. Create a customisation interface for consumers that is enjoyable and easy to use to create their own individual products.
Top picture, materials experiments for the Zostera Marina seagrass stool by Carolin Pertsch