Inderscience Publishers

Framing the role of design in transformation of consumption practices: beyond the designer-product-user triad

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Lifestyle changes can contribute to climate change mitigation. Social and technical changes are however intimately related, and consumption entangled with technology. Design researchers have proposed several strategies for facilitating more sustainable consumption patterns through design. However, many actors and structures influence both technology development and how consumption patterns evolve. Understanding the preconditions for design-led contribution requires looking beyond the designer-product-user triad. To frame further investigation into the role of design in transformation of consumption, theoretical concepts from the social sciences are introduced. Laundering is taken as an example to examine the dynamics at play and how to theoretically cope with them.

Keywords: design for sustainability, sustainable innovation, actor-network theory, ANT, practice theory, sociotechnical systems, sustainable consumption, system innovation theory, multi-level perspective, MLP

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