Last Friday I had the pleasure of participating in the seminar ‘The Circular City’ in Amsterdam. The talks from experts in sustainable design were inspiring, John Thackara, Michiel Schwarz and Fuad Luke. I am pleased to know that the values proposed in our design activity since 2005, are the values to follow ‘now’ according to these three gurus of sustainable design.
In 2005, when we began to carry out projects that generated social value (connections between disconnected groups of neighbours), environmental value (through ‘up-cycling design products), awareness generation and knowledge- transfer to people, it was not popular this kind of multiple (comprehensive) approach at all. And not many talked about it in 2005.
It was very difficult for our clients to understand that all the above aspects somehow had to integrate. It was too much to understand for them. It is true that it was, and it cost us explaining time. Luckily now there are more people trying to explain these things and give new names to what we do. (Check: sustainist design)
We, in the meantime, continue doing it, although what we do at first have no names and many did not understand it. Important is to not lose the conviction and to know that we can say now, “look, in 5 years this (weird approach) is going to have a great name, let’s go ahead now!”