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Giving car-free life a try: Designing seeds for changed practices
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Machine Design (Dept.), Product and Service Design. KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Centres, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Centres, Centre for Sustainable Communications, CESC, Green Leap.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0167-7385
KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Media Technology and Interaction Design, MID. KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Centres, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Centres, Centre for Sustainable Communications, CESC, Green Leap.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3163-7296
2016 (English)In: Proceedings of DRS 2016, Design Research Society 50th Anniversary Conference. Brighton, UK, 27–30 June 2016., Design Research Society, 2016Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

For sustainable practices to emerge, they have to be tried out. In the design intervention A Car-free Year, we studied the particularities of three families’ changed practices. With a collaborative mind-set, the practices’ constituting elements were analysed, and their intertwined links followed, forming possible design concepts. When designing these seeds for changed practices, we have found, through the knowledge gained from the participants’ different perspectives, possibilities to design initiatives that could enable more people to live car-free. We believe that designing enabling ecosystems, where all types of elements encourage sustainable practices, can be an important role of sustainable design. Furthermore, design research can challenge existing societal norms, as clearly revealed in this project, and consequently inspire more people to make sustainable lifestyle choices.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Design Research Society, 2016.
Series
Proceedings of DRS2016, ISSN 2398-3132 ; Volume
Keywords [en]
sustainable design, practice-oriented design, service design, collaborative design
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-198932OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-198932DiVA, id: diva2:1059246
Conference
DRS2016: Design + Research + Society - Future-Focused Thinking
Funder
Swedish Energy Agency
Note

QC 20161222

Available from: 2016-12-22 Created: 2016-12-22 Last updated: 2018-10-23Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Designing for shared energy responsibility
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Designing for shared energy responsibility
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

A significant part of the world’s carbon emissions is related to energy use for housing and personal transport, and there are many efforts to make this energy use more sustainable. In the field of Sustainable Human-Computer Interaction, there has been a great interest in exploring how interactive systems can be used to influence people’s energy use, often with a focus on providing information and encouraging energy users to change their behaviours. Similar ideas have been implemented in commercial products aiming to raise households’ awareness of their energy use. This approach suggests that energy use is a matter of individual choice, and that it is the energy user’s responsibility to change energy-related practices such as driving, cooking and heating the home. The effectiveness of the approach has, however, been questioned and it has been proposed to extend the focus beyond the individual – to the communities, corporations and governments that influence people’s energy practices.

With my research, I have aimed to contribute to an understanding of how various stakeholders can share responsibility for energy use and of how to take shared responsibility into account in design. The research has a starting point in studies of sustainable mobility and energy management in housing cooperatives. For these two cases, I have used design interventions to explore energy-intensive practices and more sustainable alternatives from the perspectives of both energy users and other stakeholders. In the thesis, I present ways that stakeholders influence, or could influence, energy use in terms of adoption of more sustainable practices and maintenance of these practices over time. Building on these findings, I suggest opportunities for interactive systems to amplify stakeholder initiatives and support shared responsibility for energy use, for example by contributing to transparency and trust between households and more powerful stakeholders. This includes to consider design sensitivities such as tensions between “odd” and “normal” practices, when and how to engage different stakeholders, and designing for other values than resource optimisation.

Abstract [sv]

En stor del av världens koldioxidutsläpp kommer från energianvändning kopplad till boende och persontransporter, och mycket resurser läggs på att göra denna energianvändning mer hållbar. Inom forskningsområdet Hållbar människa-datorinteraktion finns många exempel på studier av hur interaktiva system kan användas för att påverka människors energianvändning, ofta med fokus på att tillhandahålla information och att uppmuntra energianvändaren att förändra sitt beteende. Det finns också många kommersiella produkter som bygger på liknande idéer om vikten av att hushåll blir medvetna om sin energianvändning. Ett sådant fokus utgår från att energianvändning är ett val som görs på individuell nivå och att det är individens ansvar att själv förändra sin energianvändning, men från forskningsresultaten är det tveksamt hur effektivt detta är. För att förändra energianvändning i hushåll kan fokus inte bara vara på individuellt ansvar för förändring. Vi behöver även förstå hur beteendemönster kring boende, transporter, mat och konsumtion, som resulterar i energianvändning, påverkas av andra aktörer som företag, politiker och olika samhällsgrupperingar.

Med min forskning har jag haft som mål att bidra till en ökad förståelse för hur olika aktörer kan dela ansvar för energianvändning och hur man med design kan stödja ett sådant gemensamt ansvar. Som utgångspunkt för forskningen har jag två studier – den första handlar om hållbar mobilitet och den andra handlar om energiarbete i bostadsrättsföreningar. I studierna har jag använt designinterventioner för att utforska både beteendemönster kopplade till hög energianvändning och alternativa beteendemönster som är mer hållbara. I avhandlingen presenterar jag olika sätt som dessa aktörer påverkar, eller skulle kunna påverka, hur nya, mer hållbara, beteendemönster kan spridas och behållas över tid. Baserat på detta ger jag förslag på hur interaktiva system kan förstärka befintliga aktiviteter som redan utförs av olika aktörer och stödja gemensamt ansvar för energianvändning, till exempel genom att bidra till transparens och tillit mellan hushåll och aktörer med större makt. Detta inkluderar att i designen av systemen ta hänsyn till aspekter som spänningar mellan “udda” och “normala” beteenden, när och hur olika aktörer kan involveras, och att designa för andra värden än resursoptimering.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Kungliga Tekniska högskolan, 2018. p. 77
Series
TRITA-EECS-AVL ; 2018:74
Keywords
human-computer interaction, design, sustainability, practices, energy, mobility
National Category
Human Computer Interaction
Research subject
Human-computer Interaction
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-237195 (URN)978-91-7729-976-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-11-20, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20181023

Available from: 2018-10-23 Created: 2018-10-23 Last updated: 2018-10-23Bibliographically approved

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