Reflective Journey Through the ‘Environmental Design’ Course
Today’s debate crystallized a vital truth for me: achieving sustainability in design is not a static goal but a dynamic journey. It demands collaboration across diverse spheres – designers, businesses, governments, and consumers. The journey starts with educating every stakeholder about design choices’ environmental and social impacts. Integrating sustainability into the core of design – from eco-design principles to selecting sustainable materials – is imperative. Moreover, embracing a circular economy, where products are designed for longevity and recyclability, is crucial to minimize waste.
Collaboration stands as the cornerstone of this endeavor, bringing together varied expertise to foster innovation. It’s essential for governments and industries to establish standards that promote sustainable practices, incentivizing greener choices. Equally crucial is transparency in supply chains and raising consumer awareness about sustainable options.
Investing in research for new sustainable materials and technologies is paving the way for groundbreaking innovations. In a broader context, sustainable urban planning and infrastructure development play a key role in reducing environmental impacts. (European Environment Agency, 2023)
Global cooperation is indispensable in tackling challenges like climate change. Through advocacy, activism, and continuous improvement in practices and technologies, we can drive a sustainable transformation that is inclusive and ethical. (Klaczynska,2023)
Reflecting on the past eleven weeks, I realize how profoundly my perspective has shifted. Engaging in a course about environmental understanding – crucial for designer passionate about interior design like me – has been transformative.
Before this journey, names like William McDonough, Jane Bennett, and Jennifer Gabrys were just unfamiliar to me. Their revolutionary ideas on sustainable design and plastic, respectively, have now opened new horizons for me. McDonough’s concept of ‘Cradle to Cradle’ design particularly resonated with me, emphasizing the importance of designing with the end in mind – a perspective I had rarely considered before.
The course’s interactive teaching style was what captivated me most. Our lectures and workshops, where we applied theories to real-world scenarios, transformed abstract concepts into tangible experiences. The reading groups, as well as the debate, fostered lively discussions, allowing us to delve into diverse viewpoints and deepen our understanding. This open forum, valuing everyone’s opinions, was like peering through a kaleidoscope; each discussion revealed a new pattern of thinking.
Now, I see interior design through a lens of environmental responsibility. This course didn’t just amplify my enthusiasm for sustainable design; it instilled a profound sense of duty towards our planet. As I continue my journey in interior design, I am committed to integrating these principles, ensuring that every space I create or influence not only looks good but also pays homage to the planet that houses us all.
In conclusion, I extend my deepest gratitude to our tutors for their comprehensive and dedicated efforts in imparting this knowledge. Their guidance was instrumental in making this learning journey both profound and enjoyable.
European Environment Agency, 2023. Urban sustainability. Available at: https://www.eea.europa.eu/en/topics/in-depth/urban-sustainability? Accessed 29 November 2023.
Klaczynska Lewis, K. and Vreeswijk, J., 2023. How cooperation facilitates climate change. [online] EY – Global. Available at: https://www.ey.com/en_gl/law/how-to-build-cooperative-approaches-to-meet-global-climate-goals Accessed 29 November 2023.