söndag 6 maj 2018

Circular thinking in sustainable HCI (workshop)

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My previous blog post was about a workshop proposal for the upcoming NordiCHI conference, but I'm also part of another workshop proposal for that conference, "Circular thinking in sustainable HCI: Revisiting the link between invention and disposal". This proposal was spearheaded by Maja van der Velden from the University of Oslo and the workshop is organised together with Alma Leora Culén, Elina Eriksson, Daniel Pargman, Oliver Bates and Miquel Ballester.

Both Maja and Oliver participated in our sustainability-themed NordiCHI 2016 workshop and we have discussed the possibility of putting together a workshop for NordiCHI 2018 workshop of quite some time, but it was only at the very end that things actually happened. When Maja took charge, the workshop also changed focused to closer align with her specific research interests.

The aim of the workshop is thus to explore circularity as a principle of sustainable HCI. Every new invention should integrate its own disposal - where disposal can mean recycling, reuse, repair, redistribution, remanufacture or refurbishment, forming the basis for a range of design approaches such as design for repair/repairability, design for recyclability and design for circularity.

The (full-day) workshop is divided into four phases: a show and tell session where participants present and discuss "an object or material that represent their work in sustainable HCI", a mapping session, an exploratory design session and finally a session where we critically reflect on circularity.


Circular thinking in sustainable HCI: Revisiting the link between invention and disposal

Organisers
Maja van der Velden, University of Oslo
Alma Leora Culén, University of Oslo
Elina Eriksson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden 
Daniel Pargman, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden 
Oliver Bates, Lancaster University, UK
Miquel Ballester, Fairphone

“Circularity is the next big thing in design”, they say, but in what way can circularity contribute to sustainable HCI? In this workshop we will critically engage with the different aspects, applications, and implications of circularity or critical thinking and ask: Is circularity a principle of sustainable HCI? In order to answer this question, the workshop combines a variety of methods, based on a Research through Design approach. The starting points for this exploration are the artefacts that the workshop participants present in a ‘show and tell’ session. The artefacts represent both the participants’ work or interest in sustainable HCI, as well as things to talk about or think with when talking about circularity. Through two more exploratory sessions, we will give form and shape to what circular thinking can contribute to sustainable HCI. In the final session of the workshop we will map our findings on the most iconic digital device of our time, the mobile phone. Taking a life cycle perspective, we will look into redesigning our own mobile phones into a circular device. Because of the central role of design in the social and environmental sustainability of products and services, we will end our workshop with a final question: who and what will benefit from this re-design?

Keywords: Circular Design, Circular Service, Life Cycle Thinking, Mobile Phones, Sustainable HCI, Sustainable ICT, Sustainability, Sustainable Interaction Design, Green IT, UN Sustainable Development Goals

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